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Sharp increase in childcare prices [NL]

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Publication Date: 
1 Oct 2003

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Amsterdam - Childcare prices will sharply increase by 3.5 to 8.5 percent next year, prompting outrage on Wednesday from parents organisation Boink which condemned the price hike as "nonsense" and called for greater industry regulation.

Boink chairman Gjalt Jellesma said the price rise was going too far and demanded the establishment of an independent supervisory authority. The authority would test price rises to determine if they were realistic or proportional to childcare quality. Jellesma also said childcare centres must provide greater insight into their prices.

Parents are increasingly being saddled with financing childcare centers due to the dismantling of subsidies in recent years. This has in turn forced parents to turn to grandparents, friends and neighbours to take care of their children. "Childcare must remain affordable for everyone," Jellesma said.

A full-time position at a Dutch childcare centre costs on average about EUR 13,500 per year. There are also centres which charge EUR 15,000 per year, newspaper De Telegraaf reported.

Childcare prices have increased dramatically in the past few years, rising last year on average by about 10 percent. The rises have been attributed to increased labour costs, the costs associated with providing quality care, fulfilling tough regulations, furnishing and real estate costs.

The spokesman also said that childcare prices will stabilise in coming years and due to the dismantling of subsidies, parents are presently being confronted with the increased costs.

- reprinted from Expatica News