1,000 signatures reached
To: Minister for Social Services, Scott Morrison
Scrap the minimum work test for childcare!
Don't apply a minimum work test to childcare subsidies. By taking away childcare subsidies from parents who don't work or study, as many as 100,000 Australian families could be forced to withdraw their kids from childcare.
If Minister Birmingham goes ahead with a minimum work test, parents earning less than $65,000 will have their subsidy cut in half. And families earning more than $65,000 could risk losing the subsidy altogether if both parents don't work or study for at least 8-16 hours a fortnight.
This isn't uncommon, with one parent often working less than the other - particularly if they're a new mum or can't find work.
By taking away childcare subsidies, the government is making it even harder for these parents to get back into the workforce and robbing hundreds of thousands of young kids of the proven benefits of early education.
Mr Birmingham, as the Minister for Education, you have the power to stop this policy going forward. Please withdraw your support for a minimum work test for childcare subsidies.
Why is this important?
My name is Amanda, and I'm a single mother of two beautiful kids. If the minimum work test had been in place when my kids were younger, I wouldn't have been able to give them the early education they deserve.
That's because I battle with severe premature arthritis, which makes simple activities like cleaning up after my kids excruciatingly painful. I often can't work and arthritis doesn't qualify me for a disability pension, so childcare has been a lifesaver for me and for my kids. I'm sure there are many other parents like me out there.
As a single mother, I'm deeply worried about people who don't have traditional support networks and will be hit hardest by a minimum work test. If we can't access 2 days of affordable childcare in the first place, who will look after our kids when we apply for jobs? And which employer will give us a job if we're forced to bring our kids along to the interview?
But the minimum work test is not just about single parents; it also affects people who struggle to find employment. In this economic climate, many families try to pick up work where they can, but the jobs aren't there. With kids to look after 24/7, how are they meant to get back into the workforce?
Childcare is crucial for kids as well as parents. Being in childcare for at least 2 days a week has long-lasting benefits, ranging from increased attentiveness, to higher marks at school, to the ability to make friends. By restricting the opportunities of childcare to those who can afford it, you're setting thousands of kids up for a lifetime of inequality - before they've even got to school.
A minimum work test hits the families who need this subsidy the most. We need to stop it - for our kids, and for the future of Australia.
How it will be delivered
We will deliver the petition to the Minister for Education, Simon Birmingham . I will be in touch with details soon!
Thank you so much for standing up for parents who need childcare subsidies most - please continue to share our petition far and wide!