Dear Scott Morrison,
I know childcare has been on your mind lately. It’s been on mine too.
I just went back to work after my second baby. She’s so super cute, you should drop in for a cup of tea and have a cuddle. (I would even vacuum the house before you came round and potentially make you a chocolate cake.)
Before I went back to work, I sat down to work out how much my childcare was going to cost for both of my kids and what I could expect to have left over at the end of the month for things like, you know, the odd tin of baked beans and the electricity bill.
I’m sure you don’t need me to tell you I NEARLY DIED when I worked it all out. It’s a pretty shocking set of figures.
There is not a lot leftover.
So you can imagine how concerned I am about what you might be planning when it comes to changing up the childcare subsidies – Childcare Rebate and Childcare Benefit.
I want to be really clear. I don’t expect to pay nothing for childcare. I know that I made a choice to have children, and that children come with expenses (as well as their beautiful faces that bring joy to my heart.)
But I also don’t expect for women (or men when they are the primary carer) to be making a loss when they go to work.
I live in the suburbs of Melbourne. Nowhere fancy like Hawthorn, right. Just a regular everyday suburb with working/middle class people. Around here, childcare is about $115 a day.
Lots of mums like me are working part time – four days a week. So with two kids in childcare, that’s $920 a week. Annually, allowing for the two week Christmas shutdown, that’s an initial outlay of $46,000. There’s the Childcare Rebate (thank you for that, by the way) of $7,500 per child annually.
So, that’s a tidy $31,000 a year for families with two kids in childcare around here.