A new survey has found many parents are struggling to find childcare for their children over the summer holidays, the BBC has reported.
The research from the national childcare charity Daycare Trust found 60 of the 150 Family Information Services (FIS) in England had parents reporting a lack of care. In Wales, 10 of the 21 FIS said the same, and in Scotland, six of the 31 Childcare Information Services (CIS) claimed parents were finding it difficult to get cover. The charity claimed the situation could worsen with the impact of local authority spending cuts.
The survey also showed differences in the cost of a week’s childcare across the UK. With the average cost across the region at £93, those living in the South East, where reports of holiday childcare shortages were particularly high, face a bill of £105.74, whereas in the West Midlands the cost dropped to £79.02.
Alison Garnham, chief executive of Daycare Trust, said: “If the government is serious about getting parents into employment, then it must take a comprehensive approach to investing in more holiday and wrap-around childcare, while ensuring tax credits really do ‘make work pay’, so that affordable, accessible, quality childcare is available in every community, for every child.
“The recent changes to tax credits mean many working parents will in future receive less help with childcare costs – this is a seriously bad move and means more help is needed to make childcare more affordable.”