The Abbott government has brought in new funding assessment criteria for family day care centres.
The Abbott government has brought in new funding assessment criteria for family day care centres. Trevor Veale

New funding criteria could hurt rural family day care

RURAL and regional family day care centres may struggle to meet new government criteria to qualify for funding, Labor frontbencher Joel Fitzgibbon has claimed.

Mr Fitzgibbon, after meeting staff at a day care centre in New South Wales on Thursday, said it was "abundantly clear" that centres reliant on the funding may not meet the criteria.

The Abbott government has brought in the new criteria for the community support program, meaning family day care centres will be assessed under the same rules of school-linked centres and long day care centres.

Changes to criteria could see some rural and regional services shut out of the program, as they will not be eligible if the government does not deem they are meeting "unmet demand for child care of market failure".

The rules, Mr Fitzgibbon argued, could see services in rural Australia close, and fees increase, when families were already being hit by a tough budget.But the government has argued that the new criteria would instead ensure funding was "targeted in a way that is fair, sensible and sustainable".

The changes, expected to start from July 1 next year, also come as a cap is placed on the program's "operational support" payments of $250,000 for family day care centres.

- APN NEWSDESK



Warwick sporting figure joins united front against violence

Warwick sporting figure joins united front against violence

Coach out to spread message that clubs are a safe space

8 fun things to do around Warwick this weekend

8 fun things to do around Warwick this weekend

Comedy, trivia and a beer history talk...there's heaps on!

REAL CHANGE: Teen councillors put DV, global aid on agenda

REAL CHANGE: Teen councillors put DV, global aid on agenda

New leaders want more for region than parties and playgrounds.

Local Partners