Australia

Australian childcare providers ineligible for JobKeeper to get top-up funding

A small group of children play at the Robertson Street Kindy Childcare Centre in Helensburgh south of Sydney, Friday, April 3, 2020 Source: AAP

Childcare operators ineligible for the JobKeeper wage subsidy can now apply for extra government funding.

Childcare centres and family daycare providers who aren't eligible for wage subsidies will get a top-up from the government to help them stay afloat during the coronavirus crisis.

The government has made childcare free to parents during the health and economic crisis to enable them to keep their place in a centre even if they've lost their job or taken a pay cut.

But in doing so, it effectively halved the amount of income centres could count on by guaranteeing only the taxpayer subsidised portion of fees.

It said the funding guarantee would work in tandem with the JobKeeper wage subsidy. But child care run by large charities, non-government schools and many family daycare operators missed out on this.

Education Minister Dan Tehan said on Friday those operations could now apply to get a top-up payment to keep them running.

“Providers that are not eligible for the JobKeeper Payment, including non-government schools, large charities and not-for-profit organisations, will be eligible for a top-up payment,” Mr Tehan said.

“Family Day Care and In Home Care providers that are not eligible for JobKeeper and apply for an ABN by 1 June 2020 may be eligible."

In addition, centres where demand for care has increased above the early March benchmark can also get top-ups.

People in Australia must stay at least 1.5 metres away from others. Check your state’s restrictions on gathering limits. Testing for coronavirus is now widely available across Australia.

If you are experiencing cold or flu symptoms, arrange a test by calling your doctor or contact the Coronavirus Health Information Hotline on 1800 020 080. The federal government's coronavirus tracing app COVIDSafe is available for download from your phone's app store.

SBS is committed to informing Australia’s diverse communities about the latest COVID-19 developments. News and information is available in 63 languages at sbs.com.au/coronavirus.

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