Childcare gets more money, new jobs
Government plans to provide an extra €250m for childcare will generate 7,000 new jobs, according to an analysis by the Buitendijk agency.
The analysis was carried out on behalf of the childcare sector organisation Kinderopvang.
The extra money is being financed by a fall in the number of claims for extra benefits to help pay for childcare, the Financieele Dagblad says. This has led to the total budget being underused, which will bring the unused part of the budget to €300m in 2016.
Last year, the number of claims fell by 10% while the number of hours children spent in daycare was down 8%. This is partly because families with a joint income of more than €118,189 no longer qualify for help with paying for daycare.
In addition, fewer parents are now using daycare centres and playgroups, and those that do buy in fewer hours.
The decline in childcare has resulted in the loss of 30,000 jobs over the past four years. Dozens of daycare centres have closed or gone bankrupt because of the funding changes.
Kinderopvang hopes the analysis will prompt social affairs minister Lodewijk Asscher to invest the rest of the unused budget into childcare, which it says will create a further 6,000 jobs.