Child Care Subsidy Changes, the Right Step to Increase Women’s Workforce Participation

Chief Executive Women (CEW) welcomes the Federal Government’s announcement to bring forward increased Child Care Subsidy (CCS) benefits to March 2022. These changes will provide a clearer pathway to help more carers (predominantly women) participate in the workforce, while rebuilding Australia’s economy.

Access to affordable childcare has been one of the greatest blockages to women’s participation in the workforce. Productivity Commission data indicates that in 2020, Australia saw a 21% increase in the number of parents and carers in Australia who didn’t work because of associated childcare costs, compared to the previous year.

The next 12 months will be critical as Australia’s economy recovers from the pandemic. While the changes to the Child Care Subsidy (CCS) are an important step forward in increasing women’s participation in the workforce, it is not the full picture. Increased investment in care service sector jobs, strengthening of women’s economic security into retirement, reforms to paid parental leave and investment in women’s safety and wellbeing is also needed as we work together to rebuild a vibrant and smart economy.