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Childcare workers to march over unfair pay





Childcare workers will take to the streets in demand for fair pay with public rallies planned in Dublin, Cork and Sligo.

The rallies, which plan to highlight the low wages of early childhood professionals, will take place on Saturday June 6.

Organised by the Association of Childhood Professionals (ACP), the protest aims to highlight the need for improved pay for early childhood professionals as a priority issue for Government.

ACP Chairperson Marian Quinn said early childhood education and care is a vital public service, on par with primary education, yet it is not accorded the same respect and level of investment. Ireland currently spends 0.2pc of GDP on the early childhood sector, compared to an OECD average of 0.7pc.

Minimum wage

Ms Quinn said the early childhood workforce includes 25,000 people, but research found the majority of the workforce is earning just above the minimum wage of €8.65.

"Parents cannot afford to pay more for early childhood education and care and neither can professionals continue subsidising the true cost by virtue of their low wages.

"We need to convince ministers to make investment to ensure that all children, from birth to six years, benefit from high-quality early childhood education and care, and that all Early Childhood Practitioners receive pay and conditions that are commensurate with their role as professionals," she said.

Irish Independent