Cabinet to discuss creches reopening after previous plans failed for healthcare workers

Cabinet to discuss creches reopening after previous plans failed for healthcare workers
Early Childhood Ireland says funding is badly needed to help providers get their businesses back operating amid Covid-19.

Proposals for the re-opening of creches across the country on June 29 will be discussed by the Cabinet today.

Early Childhood Ireland says funding is badly needed to help providers get their businesses back operating.

Frances Byrne from Early Childhood Ireland outlines some of the industry's concerns including staffing levels and infection control.

She says measures around infection control will be important for the proposed childcare "pods" or groups of children attending creche together.

She says: "What will the requirements be for staffing and if there are to be reductions in staffing or increases in staffing in some rooms, some creches will be set up to absorb that but many will not."

Spokespeople from the childcare sector are also asking ministers to give clarity for how they can reopen and the practicalities of adjusting for business amid Covid-19.

Early Childhood Ireland says its members need to know how many children they can cater for and how many staff can be brought in for the industry's planned reopening on June 29.

There has been no childcare in the state for over two months, with a plan for healthcare workers' children scrapped days before it was due to launch due to a lack of providers who were on board.

Frances Byrne from Early Childhood Ireland says they need financial support to ensure people can get back to work.

She says: "Everybody knows, we have seen it first hand, how vital and important our sector is to the wider economy, in terms of supporting parents to go out and work so the rest of the economy can open."

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