Treasury Committee reiterates call for Childcare Vouchers to be kept open

Today the Committee responsible for scrutinising the work of HM Treasury has come out, once again, in favour of keeping Childcare Vouchers open until the full impact of the scheme’s closure is known and understood.  This is the latest development in the campaign to keep Childcare Vouchers open to new entrants beyond October, which Employers For Childcare has been championing.

The Government today published its response to the Treasury Committee’s independent Report on Childcare, which recommended that the Government keep the Childcare Voucher scheme open to new entrants, until the winners and losers of discontinuing it are known.

Commenting on today’s development, Employers For Childcare’s Policy and Information Manager, Aoife Hamilton said: “Today’s response fails to address several of the issues raised by the Treasury Committee in its Report, including delivering a full analysis of the impact of closing the Childcare Voucher scheme to new entrants.  Instead the response reiterates arguments previously made by Government that have already been challenged robustly.

“We welcome the fact that HM Treasury is being held to account by the Treasury Committee Chair, Conservative MP Nicky Morgan, over the planned closure of the Childcare Voucher scheme.  She has written that the Committee is disappointed in the Government’s response on this important issue.  The Committee is strongly urging the Government not to close the Childcare Voucher scheme without knowing the full impact on working parents”.

Employers For Childcare is encouraged that the Committee’s position has cross-party support, with Labour member Rushanara Ali, MP saying: “The Government’s ambition to move towards Tax-Free Childcare, and scrap vouchers, will cause hundreds of thousands of parents to lose out”.  Her party colleague Catherine McKinnell added: “Until the Government has properly scrutinised the effects of scrapping vouchers in favour of Tax-Free Childcare, both schemes should remain open.  Families should be able to make a choice about the form of childcare support that best suits their individual circumstances and their families’ needs.”

Aoife continues: “Employers For Childcare has today published an analysis of the Government’s response, and urges anyone who wishes to support the campaign to visit our website.  We are lobbying for a comprehensive and flexible package of childcare support for parents that includes Tax-Free Childcare and Childcare Vouchers.”