Calls for a creche to be provided at County Hall

Droitwich Advertiser: Should a creche be provided by the county council to help its workforce? Should a creche be provided by the county council to help its workforce?

CALLS are being made for Worcestershire County Council to offer a family crèche facility for hard-pressed workers.

A leading councillor says more members of staff would be tempted to return to work if the County Hall HQ was more family-friendly.

Councillor Richard Udall says more women would also feel able to come back quicker if the council offered radical solutions for new parents - saying they are hamstrung by "the highest childcare costs in Europe".

His request has led to the council's leadership offering to look at new ways to help mums and dads.

The Family and Childcare Trust says average full-time childcare costs for a family with a two-year-old and a five-year-old are estimated at £11,700 a year, up 27 per cent since 2009.

The average annual mortgage was just £7,207 last year.

Cllr Udall, speaking during a full council meeting, said: "The cost of living crisis is hurting our employees - we have the highest childcare costs in Europe and this is stopping our staff returning to work after child birth."

He called upon the council to "investigate measures to help", including a crèche.

Councillor John Campion, the cabinet member responsible for the workforce, said: "We absolutely want to support our workforce to return to work, both new mothers and new fathers too.

"Whilst we don't offer a direct crèche facility on the site, I am happy to look at it to see if we can offer one on a commercial basis.

"But while I am not ruling it out, I do think there are other ways we can support people to return to work after giving birth."

The Government is already spending £7 billion on various childcare subsidies including maternity pay, 15 hours free nursery provision for three and four year-olds and work place vouchers.

Lower income parents can get up to 70 per cent of their childcare paid for already, worth up to £300 a week for two children.

Back in March West Worcestershire MP Harriett Baldwin said the country is losing "billions" of lost tax revenues because of the amount of new parents dropping out of work.

Comments (22)

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3:38pm Tue 27 May 14

skychip says...

Good idea and could perhaps be used by employees at the Sixth Form College and Ministry offices on Whittington Road.
Good idea and could perhaps be used by employees at the Sixth Form College and Ministry offices on Whittington Road. skychip
  • Score: 7

3:45pm Tue 27 May 14

Ballymoss says...

No way... if women want to bring sprogs into the world then it should be their responsibility and the council should not be providing these facilities which ultimately even if they tell you otherwise will come out of council tax or other taxes. If you can't afford to look after sprogs after having them then that's the parents problem and the general public shouldn't have to pay anything. They get too much now in tax credits already which I think should stop. If you can't afford to keep a dog or any other animal you don't get any monetary help so why should parents as it's their choice to have them!
No way... if women want to bring sprogs into the world then it should be their responsibility and the council should not be providing these facilities which ultimately even if they tell you otherwise will come out of council tax or other taxes. If you can't afford to look after sprogs after having them then that's the parents problem and the general public shouldn't have to pay anything. They get too much now in tax credits already which I think should stop. If you can't afford to keep a dog or any other animal you don't get any monetary help so why should parents as it's their choice to have them! Ballymoss
  • Score: -15

3:51pm Tue 27 May 14

green49 says...

Ballymoss ********************
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Ballymoss ******************** ******************** ******************** ************ green49
  • Score: 6

4:14pm Tue 27 May 14

New Kid on the Block says...

Councillor John Campion, the cabinet member responsible for the workforce, said: "We absolutely want to support our workforce to return to work, both new mothers and new fathers too.

"Whilst we don't offer a direct crèche facility on the site, I am happy to look at it to see if we can offer one on a commercial basis.

Commercial basis is fine but subsidised will not be popular with anyone except those who use it.
The big problem would be finding a suitable space. County Hall is already overcrowded. There is no spare space to the best of my knowledge.
Councillor John Campion, the cabinet member responsible for the workforce, said: "We absolutely want to support our workforce to return to work, both new mothers and new fathers too. "Whilst we don't offer a direct crèche facility on the site, I am happy to look at it to see if we can offer one on a commercial basis. Commercial basis is fine but subsidised will not be popular with anyone except those who use it. The big problem would be finding a suitable space. County Hall is already overcrowded. There is no spare space to the best of my knowledge. New Kid on the Block
  • Score: 6

4:44pm Tue 27 May 14

WilkoJ says...

I am of the view that council tax should be used to provide council services and cover the cost of measures to deliver those services. Allowing tax-payers to pay for what will effectively free childcare for council staff is wrong and immoral. Staff took the decision to have children and they should cover the cost of care like many other people have to, while I don't believe I could trust staff to carry out their duties effectively knowing their children are on the same premises. The distraction for them to wander off every 10 mins to check of their children will be great and it's not as if they're working hard or have due diligence at the moment, so they don't need any more encouragement to be away from their desks.
I am of the view that council tax should be used to provide council services and cover the cost of measures to deliver those services. Allowing tax-payers to pay for what will effectively free childcare for council staff is wrong and immoral. Staff took the decision to have children and they should cover the cost of care like many other people have to, while I don't believe I could trust staff to carry out their duties effectively knowing their children are on the same premises. The distraction for them to wander off every 10 mins to check of their children will be great and it's not as if they're working hard or have due diligence at the moment, so they don't need any more encouragement to be away from their desks. WilkoJ
  • Score: 2

5:19pm Tue 27 May 14

Harry2nd says...

There won't be any staff after all the cuts so where are all the children going to come from?
There won't be any staff after all the cuts so where are all the children going to come from? Harry2nd
  • Score: 13

5:26pm Tue 27 May 14

jb says...

With all the penny pinching the county council are doing with the elderly and disabled in this county I find it particularly insulting for WCC to even consider doing this. I'm not against anyone having a family or continuing to work but council employees should not be treated any different to any other parent who wishes to put their children into child daycare. They are not expendable and after all many jobs will be lost soon when the cuts start to bite so who can say how many employees will need childcare? If this venture is undertaken using tax payers money then shouldn't it be opened up for outside workers to use it?
With all the penny pinching the county council are doing with the elderly and disabled in this county I find it particularly insulting for WCC to even consider doing this. I'm not against anyone having a family or continuing to work but council employees should not be treated any different to any other parent who wishes to put their children into child daycare. They are not expendable and after all many jobs will be lost soon when the cuts start to bite so who can say how many employees will need childcare? If this venture is undertaken using tax payers money then shouldn't it be opened up for outside workers to use it? jb
  • Score: 12

5:38pm Tue 27 May 14

Redhillman says...

Here we go again. Yet another out of touch idea and middle-finger-salute towards the tax payer. They will never ever learn or change their attitudes or enter the real world. The county hall gravy train remains firmly fixed to the rails as it continues to towards its destination called 'Another World'. The council are pathetic.
Here we go again. Yet another out of touch idea and middle-finger-salute towards the tax payer. They will never ever learn or change their attitudes or enter the real world. The county hall gravy train remains firmly fixed to the rails as it continues to towards its destination called 'Another World'. The council are pathetic. Redhillman
  • Score: 1

7:32pm Tue 27 May 14

pinkfluff says...

Councillor Richard Udall says more women would also feel able to come back quicker if the council offered radical solutions for new parents - saying they are hamstrung by "the highest childcare costs in Europe".

I think that is the point in question.

Are some of the commentors implying that only rich/wealthy people should have children?

If you look at the maths not many of us can "afford" children.
Councillor Richard Udall says more women would also feel able to come back quicker if the council offered radical solutions for new parents - saying they are hamstrung by "the highest childcare costs in Europe". I think that is the point in question. Are some of the commentors implying that only rich/wealthy people should have children? If you look at the maths not many of us can "afford" children. pinkfluff
  • Score: 10

7:59pm Tue 27 May 14

skychip says...

I assume employees would have to pay the going rate for the child care.
I assume employees would have to pay the going rate for the child care. skychip
  • Score: 6

12:21am Wed 28 May 14

Jabbadad says...

Since my "Stay at home and look after your own Kids Mum," brought up 4 Children with none of the modern household gadgets, it bothers me when some modern mums (not Single Parent mums / dads) demand child care facilities to pay for the second car, two holidays a year, and some even a nanny.
As already said here with the 50% or 1500, sackngs at County Hall by the CONservative administration, there will be a huge pool of qualified staff available who have been previously quite able to come to work.
Where is the need for yet more added costs to the local tax payers since we know like all other madcap schemes dreamt up by politicians the funding available does not fully cover the costs of the schemes. And so everybody else is asked to contribute through taxation yet again. As we will over the election based pledge by the LIB / LAB / DEM / CONS for free school meals for all kids. Why should the cost for those who can well afford to pay for their childrens meals suddenly be thrust upon the taxpayers yet again? What's next free places at boarding schools?
Since my "Stay at home and look after your own Kids Mum," brought up 4 Children with none of the modern household gadgets, it bothers me when some modern mums (not Single Parent mums / dads) demand child care facilities to pay for the second car, two holidays a year, and some even a nanny. As already said here with the 50% or 1500, sackngs at County Hall by the CONservative administration, there will be a huge pool of qualified staff available who have been previously quite able to come to work. Where is the need for yet more added costs to the local tax payers since we know like all other madcap schemes dreamt up by politicians the funding available does not fully cover the costs of the schemes. And so everybody else is asked to contribute through taxation yet again. As we will over the election based pledge by the LIB / LAB / DEM / CONS for free school meals for all kids. Why should the cost for those who can well afford to pay for their childrens meals suddenly be thrust upon the taxpayers yet again? What's next free places at boarding schools? Jabbadad
  • Score: 0

3:47am Wed 28 May 14

Rita Jelfs says...

Ignoring the 19th century comments of Ballymoss, the issue is one of a lack of good quality child care, at no cost to the taxpayer. The modern economy and standard of living is built around the income of two parents. People are also now expected to plan their retirement income via long term superannuation, without taxpayer support, and women are often the poorer in their old age because they 'bear the brunt' of a shorter working life. So, if women don't have children, to provide future workers to support the retired, the alternative is to import workers. So child care should be a community issue rather than a 'women's issue'. But maybe County Hall could give some thought to helping to facilitate premises suitable for child care, at a commercial rent, so that "barriers to entry" of prospective child care providers can be alleviated. This could be an innovative way to satisfy both childcare needs and taxpayer neutral conditions.
Ignoring the 19th century comments of Ballymoss, the issue is one of a lack of good quality child care, at no cost to the taxpayer. The modern economy and standard of living is built around the income of two parents. People are also now expected to plan their retirement income via long term superannuation, without taxpayer support, and women are often the poorer in their old age because they 'bear the brunt' of a shorter working life. So, if women don't have children, to provide future workers to support the retired, the alternative is to import workers. So child care should be a community issue rather than a 'women's issue'. But maybe County Hall could give some thought to helping to facilitate premises suitable for child care, at a commercial rent, so that "barriers to entry" of prospective child care providers can be alleviated. This could be an innovative way to satisfy both childcare needs and taxpayer neutral conditions. Rita Jelfs
  • Score: 0

12:24pm Wed 28 May 14

Hwicce says...

County Hall are trying to get rid of loads of workers but now want to increase their costs to encourage more workers.

I think they need to decide what they are trying to do as they don't seem to have much clue at the moment.
County Hall are trying to get rid of loads of workers but now want to increase their costs to encourage more workers. I think they need to decide what they are trying to do as they don't seem to have much clue at the moment. Hwicce
  • Score: 4

1:21pm Wed 28 May 14

Fishy says...

Hwicce wrote:
County Hall are trying to get rid of loads of workers but now want to increase their costs to encourage more workers. I think they need to decide what they are trying to do as they don't seem to have much clue at the moment.
The article suggests that the creche would be run commercially and might actually generate income and jobs for the council.
[quote][p][bold]Hwicce[/bold] wrote: County Hall are trying to get rid of loads of workers but now want to increase their costs to encourage more workers. I think they need to decide what they are trying to do as they don't seem to have much clue at the moment.[/p][/quote]The article suggests that the creche would be run commercially and might actually generate income and jobs for the council. Fishy
  • Score: 7

7:25pm Thu 29 May 14

Slobbin says...

There is no way the Council would fund this, it would have to be paid for by fees from those who are using it.

Where is the evidence that there is not enough childcare already? Where would it go? How would it be able to provide care at less than the usual rates for childcare?
There is no way the Council would fund this, it would have to be paid for by fees from those who are using it. Where is the evidence that there is not enough childcare already? Where would it go? How would it be able to provide care at less than the usual rates for childcare? Slobbin
  • Score: 2

7:58pm Thu 29 May 14

DarrenM says...

Surely they should have a taxpayer subsidized Costa, A free gym in the underground bunker, and a free massages at their desks.
After all they do all work so hard.,......
Surely they should have a taxpayer subsidized Costa, A free gym in the underground bunker, and a free massages at their desks. After all they do all work so hard.,...... DarrenM
  • Score: 1

6:44pm Fri 30 May 14

roguetomato says...

As long as the parents have to pay for it and not us, then that's fine.

Just because you've had a kid, it doesn't give you the right to sponge off of us and get free stuff.

Parents get enough free money as it is, which is ridiculous.

Me and my wife are not having children yet, as if we did, one of us would have to quit our jobs and we'd have to get benefits, which means WE CANT AFFORD TO HAVE KIDS.

It's actually really simple.
As long as the parents have to pay for it and not us, then that's fine. Just because you've had a kid, it doesn't give you the right to sponge off of us and get free stuff. Parents get enough free money as it is, which is ridiculous. Me and my wife are not having children yet, as if we did, one of us would have to quit our jobs and we'd have to get benefits, which means WE CANT AFFORD TO HAVE KIDS. It's actually really simple. roguetomato
  • Score: -1

8:55pm Fri 30 May 14

Slobbin says...

roguetomato wrote:
As long as the parents have to pay for it and not us, then that's fine.

Just because you've had a kid, it doesn't give you the right to sponge off of us and get free stuff.

Parents get enough free money as it is, which is ridiculous.

Me and my wife are not having children yet, as if we did, one of us would have to quit our jobs and we'd have to get benefits, which means WE CANT AFFORD TO HAVE KIDS.

It's actually really simple.
Not everyone who has children gets benefits. I know a lot of families where both parents work, no benefits are received and definitely no "free stuff".

Actually, if you could let me know where all this free stuff is that would be great, because at the moment I work full time to pay mortgage, bills, transport costs, food for 5, clothes etc etc. Meanwhile, when you are retired it will be my children's taxes that are paying for you.
[quote][p][bold]roguetomato[/bold] wrote: As long as the parents have to pay for it and not us, then that's fine. Just because you've had a kid, it doesn't give you the right to sponge off of us and get free stuff. Parents get enough free money as it is, which is ridiculous. Me and my wife are not having children yet, as if we did, one of us would have to quit our jobs and we'd have to get benefits, which means WE CANT AFFORD TO HAVE KIDS. It's actually really simple.[/p][/quote]Not everyone who has children gets benefits. I know a lot of families where both parents work, no benefits are received and definitely no "free stuff". Actually, if you could let me know where all this free stuff is that would be great, because at the moment I work full time to pay mortgage, bills, transport costs, food for 5, clothes etc etc. Meanwhile, when you are retired it will be my children's taxes that are paying for you. Slobbin
  • Score: 2

12:00am Sat 31 May 14

Jabbadad says...

slobbin Just as we now retired paid for your education and your parents retirement the difference is we didn't complain.
slobbin Just as we now retired paid for your education and your parents retirement the difference is we didn't complain. Jabbadad
  • Score: 0

10:13am Sat 31 May 14

roguetomato says...

Slobbin wrote:
roguetomato wrote:
As long as the parents have to pay for it and not us, then that's fine.

Just because you've had a kid, it doesn't give you the right to sponge off of us and get free stuff.

Parents get enough free money as it is, which is ridiculous.

Me and my wife are not having children yet, as if we did, one of us would have to quit our jobs and we'd have to get benefits, which means WE CANT AFFORD TO HAVE KIDS.

It's actually really simple.
Not everyone who has children gets benefits. I know a lot of families where both parents work, no benefits are received and definitely no "free stuff".

Actually, if you could let me know where all this free stuff is that would be great, because at the moment I work full time to pay mortgage, bills, transport costs, food for 5, clothes etc etc. Meanwhile, when you are retired it will be my children's taxes that are paying for you.
I will pay my taxes right up until I retire - Also, I have a private pension so I will have little need for a state one.

I know lots of people that get money from the government to pay their rent and so fourth, because they can't afford it themselves. It's a personal choice to have children, so you go into it informed - It's not like you have a kid, and then it suddenly dawns on you that it costs a lot of money!!!

If 2 people decide to have a kid, but in doing so they HAVE to seek benefits, then clearly those 2 people are not financially equipped to have a child, therefore they shouldn't.

So you work to support your family... Would you like a medal?? That's the way it should be.

And yes there are a lot of families that receive no extra benefits because they both work, and again, that's the way it should be...If those people can do it, there is no excuse why others can't.
[quote][p][bold]Slobbin[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]roguetomato[/bold] wrote: As long as the parents have to pay for it and not us, then that's fine. Just because you've had a kid, it doesn't give you the right to sponge off of us and get free stuff. Parents get enough free money as it is, which is ridiculous. Me and my wife are not having children yet, as if we did, one of us would have to quit our jobs and we'd have to get benefits, which means WE CANT AFFORD TO HAVE KIDS. It's actually really simple.[/p][/quote]Not everyone who has children gets benefits. I know a lot of families where both parents work, no benefits are received and definitely no "free stuff". Actually, if you could let me know where all this free stuff is that would be great, because at the moment I work full time to pay mortgage, bills, transport costs, food for 5, clothes etc etc. Meanwhile, when you are retired it will be my children's taxes that are paying for you.[/p][/quote]I will pay my taxes right up until I retire - Also, I have a private pension so I will have little need for a state one. I know lots of people that get money from the government to pay their rent and so fourth, because they can't afford it themselves. It's a personal choice to have children, so you go into it informed - It's not like you have a kid, and then it suddenly dawns on you that it costs a lot of money!!! If 2 people decide to have a kid, but in doing so they HAVE to seek benefits, then clearly those 2 people are not financially equipped to have a child, therefore they shouldn't. So you work to support your family... Would you like a medal?? That's the way it should be. And yes there are a lot of families that receive no extra benefits because they both work, and again, that's the way it should be...If those people can do it, there is no excuse why others can't. roguetomato
  • Score: 3

9:44pm Mon 2 Jun 14

Slobbin says...

Actually, rogue tomato, a medal would be nice as it's pretty hard working full time and raising kids. A medal would be much nicer than all the criticism that parents get.

Typical criticism no. 1: parents should stay at home with their children and not put them into childcare.

Criticism no 2: parents shouldn't expect to be supported when they decide to have kids.

I could go on.

Oh and by the way, parents pay tax as well.
Actually, rogue tomato, a medal would be nice as it's pretty hard working full time and raising kids. A medal would be much nicer than all the criticism that parents get. Typical criticism no. 1: parents should stay at home with their children and not put them into childcare. Criticism no 2: parents shouldn't expect to be supported when they decide to have kids. I could go on. Oh and by the way, parents pay tax as well. Slobbin
  • Score: 1

12:30am Tue 3 Jun 14

Jabbadad says...

But not as much tax as those without children. Particularly when you take tax credits and child allowances into account.
But not as much tax as those without children. Particularly when you take tax credits and child allowances into account. Jabbadad
  • Score: -2

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