In her role as Labour’s Shadow Secretary of State for Education, Lucy warned on a visit to Orchard Children’s Centre in Warrington that some families in the borough will miss out on 30 hours free childcare due to Ministers’ broken promises.
Lucy visited Orchard Children’s Centre and meet parents at a stay and play session to talk to them about services for families and the cost of childcare.
Since 2010 the cost of childcare in Warrington has risen by 17 per cent - this means parents are now paying £750 more for a part-time nursery place than they did five years ago. Before the general election David Cameron promised working parents with 3 and 4 year olds 15 extra hours of childcare on top of the 15 hours every child receives introduced by the last Labour government.
However, since then, the government have reduced the eligibility of the scheme meaning that parents have to earn £107 per week to be eligible. As a result, low income parents will have to work more hours than higher paid parents to be eligible for the scheme.
Across the country government figures show that one in three parents who were promised the scheme by the Tories will now miss out because the government failed to properly identify the cost of the scheme.Read more
Lucy Powell MP, Labour’s Shadow Education Secretary, commenting on the announcement by David Cameron on parenting classes, said:
“David Cameron is fond of making speeches about families but absolutely woeful in following through. In opposition he claimed he wanted to deliver ‘the most family friendly government ever’ but the actions of his government - the closure of hundreds of Sure Start children’s centres, huge cuts to family support services, tax credit and welfare changes for example - have left many, many more families in crisis.
“Good parenting programmes alongside meaningful early intervention are not only critical but also benefit society and create investment for the economy. However, what we’ve seen from five years of the Tories is a far cry from good family policy.”
Lucy Powell MP, Labour’s Shadow Secretary of State for Education, commenting ahead of the Prime Minister’s speech on children’s services, said:
“It’s about time we heard from the Government about the important work that social workers and others do in protecting the most vulnerable children. In five and half years of their government, they’ve said and done very little.
“It’s critical that this public service looks at new ways of working and better early intervention programmes to deal with the root causes of rising levels of children and babies in care. However, the government is completely wrong to think that the huge cuts to children’s services in most parts of the country on their watch isn’t going to have hugely damaging consequences for vulnerable children. This is going to be their legacy: more and more children being failed.”