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Child-care spending helps economy [AU]

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Wroe, David
Publication Date: 
15 Jul 2003

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Every dollar spent by the Commonwealth on child care returns more than $12 to the economy, research has found, prompting calls for the Howard Government to boost its spending in the area.

The study, by the Department of Family and Community Services, found that each dollar generated $5.63 in wages parents earned while their child was in care, $1.86 in government revenue and $12.28 in total economic benefit. The research was presented at the weekend at the Early Childhood Australia conference.

Shadow minister for children and youth, Jacinta Collins, welcomed it. "This research demonstrates that the government gains much more from child care and they should be prepared to put more into it, particularly given the access crisis many parents face," she said.

A spokeswoman for the Children and Youth Affairs Minister, Larry Anthony, said the Government had committed more than $8 billion over the next four years to child care.

More than a quarter of Australian children benefited from the means-tested child-care subsidies provided by the Commonwealth to parents, she said.

-Reprinted from The Age.