Childcare workers deserve £15 an hour minimum wage – TUC

Commenting on the announcement today (Friday) that the government is offering £1,000 to new childcare staff in 20 areas amid concerns about the rollout of free childcare hours to two-year-olds in just two months’ time, TUC General Secretary Paul Nowak said:

“This is too little, too late.

“It does nothing to address the retention crisis in childcare, or this Tory government’s chronic underfunding of the childcare sector over the last 13 years.

“Caring for and educating young children is skilled work, and the overwhelmingly female workforce deserves decent pay and conditions.

“Ministers must introduce a £15 an hour minimum wage for childcare workers, and work with unions to upskill staff and stop the race to the bottom on pay and conditions.

“And they should require childcare employers to end the use of zero-hours contracts and pay decent sick pay to all workers.”

TUC analysis published in August found every English region was struggling to recruit childcare workers.

Nearly all (95%) of English councils who responded to a Coram survey said that childcare providers in their area were having difficulty recruiting childcare workers – and eight in 10 (80%) local authorities described it as “very difficult”.