FINE GAEL ELECTION MANIFESTO – FAMILY & CHILDCARE
Throughout this manifesto, Fine Gael’s focus is to keep the recovery going so that families across Ireland can plan for their future. Ireland can never go back to where we were in 2011. That is why Fine Gael has set out solid steps in our Long Term Economic Plan to provide families with confidence that the next 5 years will not be like the last 5. In an uncertain world, our Plan will reinforce Ireland’s position as a jobs and family-focused country of stability and opportunity.
Fine Gael’s Investing in the Early Years plan will benefit parents and children in the Dun Laoghaire Constituency. Highlights include:
- An additional 8 weeks paid leave by 2021, to be taken in the child’s first year by either parent
- A €2,000 annual subsidy for children aged 9 months to 3 years in childcare facilities
- Free Dental Care for Under 6s
- Smaller class sizes – from 27:1 to 18:1
- New afterschool care options in school buildings
- New in-school speech and language service
Fine Gael’s Long Term Economic Plan to keep the recovery going is made up of three steps: more and better jobs; making work pay through the abolition of USC and more affordable childcare; and better services. We know that the first five years of a child’s life last a lifetime. We want to invest in the early years so that we keep the recovery going and no child in the Dun Laoghaire Constituency is left behind. We must invest early to save later.
Since going into Government in 2011, Fine Gael has prioritised children and their welfare. We established a new Child and Family Agency, and introduced child protection legislation, free GP care for under 6s in the Dun Laoghaire Constituency and a second free pre-school year.
Now, we want to build on this progress. As we keep the recovery going Fine Gael will target investment in the early years, those crucial first five years in a child’s life. Additional parental leave, affordable childcare and smaller classrooms underpin Fine Gael’s long-term economic plan, along with targeted investment.
We want to give parents in the Dun Laoghaire Constituency more quality time with their children, so we are going to provide an additional eight weeks parental leave, to be taken by either parent in the first year of the child’s life. We also want to make childcare more affordable for working families. We’ll do this by providing a €2,000 annual subsidy for children aged 9 months to 36 months who are attending childcare facilities. We are also committed to free dental care for under 6s and new in-school speech and language services in primary schools to support young children early.
Giving our children the best possible start means they will become more independent, healthier and wealthier in later life.
Click here for further details on our plans for Families and Childcare in the Fine Gael Election Manifesto