Nurseries are at risk of not re-opening after the COVID19 crisis if they do not receive support from the Government during this time, said Stockton North MP Alex Cunningham AT Prime Minister’s questions today.
Nursery workers were left with uncertainty when the Government did a U-turn on support for nurseries and stopped them placing a large proportion of staff on furlough because they claimed the nurseries were already Government funded for many of the children in their care.
During Prime Minister’s Questions today, Alex asked the First Secretary of State:
“There have never been sufficient nursery places to meet the extra demand created by the Child Care Act of 2016 and now things are set to get worse.
“I have received a huge number of emails from local nursery managers and workers, angry at the Government for not taking the necessary action to protect early-years workers during the Coronavirus crisis, as they are not entitled to access the furlough scheme.
“What will he do to sort this out and ensure that their nurseries still exist once this crisis is over?”
The First Secretary of State avoided responding to the issue of nurseries and directed Alex towards the support that had already been published – but did say the Government would continue to look at how best to support different organisations.
Afterwards Alex said:
“This is simply not good enough – hundreds of nurseries across the country could go bust due to the current crisis and thousands of nursery workers thrown out of a job.
“It’s time for Ministers to think again and ensure that nurseries get the support they desperately need. Failure to deliver on that will result in nursery provision being devasted across the country creating a new crisis for parents who depend on them in order to work.”