A coalition of Australia’s major Outside School Hours Care (OSHC) service providers has today welcomed the Federal Government’s announcement that it will deliver a childhood education and care relief package that will help sustain the Out of School Hours Care sector. The announcement follows engagement between the sector and the Government over an urgent support package to preserve the industry, the jobs of thousands of employees and the care provided to hundreds of thousands of children.
“We strongly support the Government’s announced package today which will provide much needed relief to families and the childcare industry, including the OSHC sector,” said Sinead Ryan, a spokesperson for the OSHC providers.
“Our five organisations came together in recent weeks to fight for the sector, our staff and the families who depend on our care. We have worked closely with the Government to address the considerable issues facing the sector in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. In particular, without today’s announcement, the significant fall in attendance at our services had made providing services for those who need it unviable.”
“Today’s announcement goes a long way to ensuring we can continue to provide these services to the families who rely on us, and together with the JobKeeper payment will enable us to support our childcare workers through this difficult time.
“It also strengthens the long-term viability of the sector and its ability to provide large scale before and after school and vacation care services for families around Australia once the pandemic ends,” Ms Ryan said.
In addition to employing thousands of Australians and caring for hundreds of thousands of children, OSHC is recognised as essential to supporting workforce participation, including for essential workers who continue to keep Australia running during the pandemic.
Providers will continue to engage with Government on the details of the package and work to allow suspended services to be reopened as quickly as possible.