Weston MP tells Boris Johnson UK childcare is among 'most unaffordable'
- Credit: PA
Weston MP John Penrose will sit down with Boris Johnson to discuss childcare reform in the UK after telling the Prime Minster the UK has 'some of the most unaffordable childcare in the developed world'.
Speaking at Prime Minster's Questions today (December 1), Mr Penrose told the PM the current childcare system is too expensive and prevents parents from working.
He told the House of Commons: "Britain has some of the most unaffordable childcare in the developed world which reduces opportunities for working families, particularly single parents, deepens gender pay gaps and makes levelling up much harder.
"So will the Prime Minister meet with me to discuss the proposal in my just-published policy paper 'Poverty Trapped' for an immediate review to design out these internationally uncompetitive costs while still delivering a safe and enriching level of care for our children too."
Boris Johnson agreed with his Anti-corruption champion's point on the importance of childcare and its influences.
He added: "I am always happy to meet my Right Honourable Friend and to discuss his ideas further."
Section 4.8 of the aforementioned Poverty Trapped document written by Mr Penrose says "Ministers should launch an immediate, independent review of the regulations and other factors affecting the costs in our childcare sector, with terms of reference which require it to design out costs to below the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) average, while still delivering a safe and enriching level of service."
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It suggests that 'this change should make a huge difference to both hard-working parents and to taxpayers too'.
"It would improve social mobility and meritocracy by bringing employment within reach for many more people, particularly single parents and working women, reducing gender pay gaps and giving firms a bigger, better pool of talent to choose from when they are recruiting or promoting to fill a particular role," it adds.
An OECD study found that the United Kingdom offered the second-most expensive childcare in the developed world, behind New Zealand, costing more than 35 per cent of the average wage spent on childcare for a couple with two young children.
The full Poverty Trapped document can be found at www.johnpenrose.org/wp/PovertyTrapped.pdf