3
Feb
2021

How to encourage more mothers back into paid work

by Danielle Wood


Federal Pre-Budget Submission 2021-22, 3 February 2021

Australians who want to participate in the workforce or increase their paid work should be encouraged and supported to do so.

Yet many mothers with young children are deterred from returning to work, or taking on an extra day, because of the cost of childcare. Women who have had a child are much more likely to work part-time, even into their 50s and 60s, than women without children.

Making childcare more affordable is the single biggest policy lever the Federal Government has to support women’s long-term workforce participation. And boosting workforce participation is one of the biggest economic growth opportunities for Australia.

The Government should make incremental reforms to the Child Care Subsidy to reduce work disincentives, as part of its delayed 2020 review of the system.

Boosting women’s workforce participation through more affordable and accessible childcare would boost economic growth, underpin Australians’ living standards for decades to come, and help Australia to ‘build back better’ after the COVID crisis.

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