Coronavirus Northern Ireland: Coade concerned with childcare system | Latest Newry News, Newry Sport and Newry Business for Newry City

Coronavirus Northern Ireland: Coade concerned with childcare system

Newry and Armagh Alliance representative Jackie Coade has expressed concerns regarding the state of the childcare system in Northern Ireland.

Like other struggling sectors following the Covid 19 crisis, childcare is on the brink of collapsing, she warned.



NICMA (Northern Ireland Childminding Association) is concerned that hundreds of registered child-minding businesses will not survive the Covid-19 outbreak as they struggle financially without support, and that the safety of children could be put at risk.

Childminders have seen their business disappear overnight, freeing the market for unregistered child-minders to step in to provide the service without the necessary safeguarding.

Speaking to Newry Times, Ms Coade stated, “It is imperative that childminders are not left behind following the Covid 19 crisis.

“Any economic recovery package needs to include childminders who are now struggling financially with no furloughing made available to them, reduced numbers of children due to restrictions, confusion within the Childcare Support Scheme for childminders and a lack of communication amongst organisations.



“Childminders I have spoken to in Newry and Armagh don’t want money thrown at them, they want to get back to work.

“In order to do this they need clarification from the departments on how many children they can resume working with.

“Childminders are valued members of our workforce and provide a valuable service for working parents.

“At the moment I think it’s fair to say they are feeling undervalued,” she insisted.

“Confusion has now set in regarding two definitions of key workers. One from the health trusts regarding key workers only.

“The other regarding those who qualify via the Education Authority.

“This confusion has resulted in those who are now unable to get childcare looking to unregistered childminders or grandparents for support.



“This obviously brings health risks with it. Unregistered individuals will not have been vetted; it will be a safeguarding issue and they will definitely have no public liability insurance.”

Ms Coade added, “Using unregistered childminders can be very dangerous as it presents its own risks and can be a health and safety issue for the children involved.

“It is important that we do everything we can to ensure childminders within Newry and Armagh are given the right support following covid 19 as we make our way into a possible recession.”


Keep up to date with all the latest Northern Ireland Coronavirus / Covid-19 news HERE



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Posted by on Jun 12 2020. Filed under Coronavirus. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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