Alliance MLA Chris Lyttle has said a childcare act would help bring childcare provision here in line with the rest of the UK.
Mr Lyttle was speaking during an event launching the Childcare for All Campaign and Charter at Stormont today. Currently, families in Northern Ireland can only access around half the paid early education and childcare hours those in England can. The East Belfast MLA said the issue was the most consistent one raised with him by families in his constituency.
“Quality childcare and early years’ education is absolutely vital to the development of our children, and to allow families to access the training and employment opportunities needed to provide a good quality of life for their family and to obtain the skills and ability to contribute to our economy.
“Therefore, it is disappointing we continue to see families here struggle to access and afford quality childcare. That is why I have proposed the establishment of an all-party group on early education and childcare to initiate work on delivery of the childcare for all campaign.
“Childcare costs has been the single most raised issue with me in my time as an MLA. That alone is enough to seek urgent restoration of the Assembly, as there is an urgent need for a childcare act to give quality childcare provision which is accessible and affordable for all.”