Childcare

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Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Social Services Minister Scott Morrison hope the government’s childcare policy will encourage more Australians to enter or re-enter the workforce. Paul Miller/AAP

Childcare package neither bold or sustainable

Making the case for subsidising childcare is not as simple as it might seem, and the government's new childcare package may not pay for itself.
Social Services minister Scott Morrison’s nanny package undercuts the general principle of qualifications for child care. AAP/Lukas Coch

Morrison’s nanny program risks undercutting quality care

Social Services minister Scott Morrison has unveiled the first part of the Abbott government’s “families package” ahead of next month’s federal budget and the signs are not good. With the announcement…
Removing the childcare rebate for parents who do not fully immunise their children is unnecessarily punitive and could have repercussions. Oksana Shufrych/Shutterstock

Forget ‘no jab, no pay’ schemes, there are better ways to boost vaccination

Immunisation in Australia isn't compulsory – and doesn't need to be controversial. Most Australians recognise the incredible benefits that vaccination provides to prevent serious disease.
The Productivity Commission’s report on childcare will help inform the Abbott government’s soon-to-be-unveiled ‘families package’. AAP/Paul Miller

Productivity Commission childcare report shows blind faith in market

Many of the Productivity Commission's proposals derive from assumptions that the funding of these services should ensure minimal interference, with a classic, market-based model for meeting "demand".
Time to go back to work? Toddler via Photographee.eu/Shutterstock

Why free childcare is not helping many mums back to work

Over the last 20 years, early childhood education and childcare for the under-fives has become a major policy priority in the UK. Get more mothers into work, it’s argued, and we can start to close the…
Nordic nations enjoy regulated working hours, substantial welfare provision and strong economies. www.shutterstock.com

We can learn a lot about public policy from the Nordic nations

At the end of this month Australia’s Productivity Commission will issue the final report of its inquiry into Early Childhood Education and Care. The inquiry was limited from the outset by the requirement…
The proportion of women in the Australian news media has grown, but in general men still rule the newsrooms. EPA/Yoon S. Byun

Why men still run newsrooms, defying the influx of women

As I write this I can hear a clique of blokes guffawing at morning news conference. Not a woman at the table … We are marginalised and excluded by the blokes' club because admitting women would change…
The Productivity Commission report reflect the limits set by Tony Abbott when he announced terms of reference focused on economic benefit. AAP/Alan Porritt

PC logic: let the market solve childcare market failure

The Productivity Commission’s Draft Report on Childcare and Early Childhood Learning shows the serious limitations of market economics for analysing social policy. The report’s 900-plus pages offer a collection…

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