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Expanded childcare support a big help for working families

The New Zealand Council of Trade Unions believes today’s announcement on expanded childcare assistance will be a big help to many working families.

“We welcome these changes which further underline how this Government is backing working families at a challenging time for so many,” said Council of Trade Unions Secretary Melissa Ansell-Bridges.

The changes which come into effect from April 2023 are part of a package of measures to help families and include an increase in the value of childcare assistance, a lift to the Family Tax Credit and an increase in the Best Start payment for those with newborn babies.

“We know working families are facing increasing costs across groceries, fuel, mortgages, rents and electricity so this extra support will make a real difference to those needing childcare assistance which can be a significant part of the household budget.

“It will also make it easier for those to seek work or expand their hours which so many working people are having to do to make ends meet.”

CTU economist Craig Renney said the expanded childcare assistance was a sensible response to cost-of-living pressures. “This is targeted support that focusses on a really important service. It supports families on low incomes, and increases access to a service that many working families rely on. It’s a better use of money rather than National’s irresponsible promise of uncosted, unfair, and unnecessary tax cuts which are heavily focused on the top 5% of income earners, and landlords.”