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Child benefit proposals 'causing upset'

Posted by SchoolDays Newshound on 09/05/2013. Child benefit proposals 'causing upset'Tags: Education And Politics

Proposed changes to child benefits in Ireland have caused upset in the coalition and worry among parent groups.

Education Minister Ruairi Quinn indicated further child benefit cuts could be on the cards by suggesting the money might be spent elsewhere, the Irish Independent reports.

Mr Quinn hinted that some of the money reserved for child benefit each year - which stands at around €2 billion - might be used to provide a second year of free pre-school care.

Niamh Ui Cheallaigh, spokeswoman for Parents Against Cuts to Child Benefit, commented: "It won't be very welcome to hear this for a lot of families, they will be horrified, to say the least."

Despite this, the Irish Times reports that Minister for Children Frances Fitzgerald has lent her backing to the idea, claiming the second year of free pre-school will be made available to 65,000 children within the next 18 months provided the government gets behind the scheme. 

Written by Donal WalshADNFCR-2163-ID-801582941-ADNFCR



(17-05-2013 22:41)

is 18 the cut off point for child benefit regardless of 3rd level education


(09-05-2013 10:22)

Press Release from PACUB - 9th May 2013

PACUB- Parents against cuts to child benefit is very disappointed to see that Education Minister Ruairi Quinn is suggesting that child benefit should be cut to pay for an extra year of pre-school education. We feel they are robbing Peter to pay Paul. What our government should be doing is investing more in our future tax payers.

This year we saw the 4th cut in a row to child benefit, and there is talk of more cuts to come in future budgets, regardless of the effects or consequences of past and yet to come cuts. All advice on the folly of such actions has been ignored. In fact our government has been encouraged to do more and invest more in children in Ireland: the OECD outlined this in a report in 2009 "Spend early on children". Our government has not yet taken any of the recommendations on board.

We can only hope that this is kite flying to generate a reaction, and this is ours: while PACUB would like to see an extra pre-school year, as we do need to do more for our children, this should not lead to other children receiving less child benefit. We would also like to remind Minister Quinn that this will not ease the burden of high childcare cost for many parents but could see them struggling more with fees as many children will not be eligible for the free year. So we would urge a rethink of this suggestion and we would call for child benefit to be left alone our children have paid enough.

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