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Childcare initiative will be welcome boost for 210,000 families in Scotland

March 19, 2013 4:31 PM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Scottish Liberal Democrat spokesperson for Young People Liam McArthurLiam McArthurLiam McArthur MSP has today welcomed a major new scheme from the Coalition Government which could help around 210,000 families in Scotland with their childcare costs.

The Coalition Government's scheme will save the typical working family with two children up to £2,400 a year. Families will be able to open an online voucher account and have their payments "topped up" by government.

Commenting on the scheme, Mr McArthur said:

"Everyone knows that the cost of childcare is a big worry for many families in Scotland. Almost a quarter of working mothers, for example, say they would like to work longer but can't do so because of the cost of childcare.

"This initiative delivered by Liberal Democrats in coalition government could help around 210,000 families in Scotland. Scottish Liberal Democrats want the SNP to pick up the baton and do more to help families in these tough economic times. That's why we have pressed the Scottish Government to match the UK government's commitment to free childcare for 40 percent of two year olds, beginning with those from poorer backgrounds.

"Our plans would help 24,000 children in Scotland, going much further than the one percent promised by the SNP. As well as creating jobs and allowing more families, especially mothers, to work, this measure would also help tackle the gap in attainment levels between children from the poorest backgrounds and their better off classmates. These are steps the SNP could build upon today to help families.

"Scottish Liberal Democrats want the SNP government to be more ambitious and to support our plans which would help to build a stronger economy and deliver a fairer society."