Childcare is to be extended to 80,000 more families in 2013. It will be worth up to £175 a week for once child and £300 for two or more. Ministers are saying that scrapping the minimum working hours or the childcare support with benefit 80,000 families.
At the moment families can get working tax credits to cover up to 70% of their weekly childcare costs BUT only if they are working 16 hours or more a week.
It will come into force in 2013, the same time they are introducing the universal credit – a single payment consolidating existing in-work and out of work benefits like child tax credit, working tax credit and jobseekers allowance.
You can read more of what the ministers are saying on it at the BBC
For Labour, shadow work and pensions secretary Liam Byrne said the government had already reduced childcare support from 80% to 70% of weekly costs as part of a general squeeze on benefits.
“Today’s announcement is frankly smoke and mirrors,” he said.
“It won’t mean a penny more help for parents already struggling on childcare tax credits. Universal credit is now set to lock in a ‘parents’ penalty’ that cuts back childcare payments so hard that many parents will be forced to give up work.
“With parents struggling to make ends meet, it beggars belief that the Tories are stopping parents working the hours and shifts they need by taking away their childcare.”
Do you think its enough to enable people with children to be able to afford to get back into work?