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Anthony Albanese extends Covid childcare payment easing cost of living pressure on parents

Huge cost of living gains Australian parents as government extends large childcare allowance for another year

  • Federal government extends major childcare payments until June 2023
  • It means parents have no money when their child is away with Covid or flu
  • The number of allowed absences is also kept at 52, 10 higher than before the pandemic

Australian parents took a big win just before tax time after Anthony Albanese announced the federal government would waive childcare benefits for another year.

The support measure was introduced in July 2021, at the height of the pandemic, and meant that nurseries could waive gap payments and keep places for children free if parents had to keep their children at home for a lockdown or because they were sick.

The gap rate is the difference between the childcare allowance, which is paid by the government, and the remaining amount that is paid by the family.

The original emergency childcare measures introduced during the pandemic were set to expire next week, but payments have now been extended until June 2023.

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Federal government extends big payment for childcare until June 2023 in big win for Australian families

The number of days a child can be absent from daycare without losing their place is also kept at 52 days a year, 10 more than what was available before the pandemic.

Education Secretary Jason Clare said the extension was “common sense”.

“Keeping children enrolled in childcare is good for them, good for families and good for the economy,” he said.

Young Children Minister Anne Aly said the announcement shows the government is prioritizing early education.

“Early education is an investment in our children, our youth and our future,” she said.

“And I’m proud to be part of a government that understands and prioritizes the value of early childhood education.”

Every day, about 19 nurseries across the country are temporarily closed due to Covid or flu outbreaks.

The extension of the Covid support measures will ensure that parents do not sit out if their children become ill.

Interim fees may also be waived if the child is absent because an immediate family member is positive for Covid.

Providers are also eligible for assistance if they are forced to close or partially close due to staff illness.

It means parents will have no money if their child is away with Covid or flu and the number of absences allowed should also be kept at 52, 10 higher than before the pandemic

It means parents will have no money if their child is away with Covid or flu and the number of absences allowed should also be kept at 52, 10 higher than before the pandemic

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