Search

Founder of Mumsnet website says government attitude to childcare is ‘baffling’

17:00 08 April 2013

Justine Roberts, co-founder of Mumsnet and one of the most influential mums in the country. Picture: Tom Pilston

Justine Roberts, co-founder of Mumsnet and one of the most influential mums in the country. Picture: Tom Pilston

Copyright Photo Tom Pilston, 07802 572 609 , tom@pilston.fsnet.co.uk

The founder of Mumsnet – one of the most influential mums in the UK – has applauded the government for finally waking up to the crippling costs of childcare.

However, Justine Roberts, chief executive officer and co-founder of the online mums’ forum, questioned why the new cash boost is going to families already earning hundreds of thousands of pounds a year.

Ms Roberts, who runs her business from Highgate Road, Kentish Town, is “dumbfounded” that the government will give high-earners tax breaks while cutting child benefit to parents on much smaller incomes.

The mother of four children aged seven to 14, said: “We have been calling for help with the ever-rising cost of childcare.

“While wages remain stagnant, childcare costs continue to rise. Almost a third of a parents’ income is going on childcare. It’s the biggest single cost after the mortgage.

“The fact that they have announced something that means £1billion is going into childcare is good.

“Many, many mothers in particular have either given up work or not accepted a job because of the costs of childcare.

“But there are quite a few concerns. The biggest single concern – or dumbfoundedness – is why they have pitched the tax relief at people who earn so much. A household could earn £300,000 a year and still get a tax break.

“That is inconsistent with other cuts, such as cuts to child benefit and to childcare tax credit.”

The Budget announced that every year working parents earning up to £150,000 each will get up to £1,200 per child under five to help pay for childcare.

This replaces the current scheme in which parents can get tax-free childcare vouchers in lieu of part of their salary – a scheme hindered by the fact that only a small proportion of employers offer the vouchers.

Ms Roberts says childcare costs a minimum of £250 a week in London – and more likely £350 a week.

According to the 2011 census, there were 7,226 women in Camden and 8,548 women in Haringey staying at home to look after the family.

0 comments

Latest News Stories

Yesterday, 16:40
Hugo Duggan, pictured in 2010 during the family's Justice For Jeremiah campaign. Picture: Nigel Sutton

The father of a Golders Green student who died in Germany in 2003 after becoming involved with a far-right cult has finally opened a birthday card sent from his son just before his death.

Yesterday, 15:37
Brookfield Park Surgery will move to Highgate

Two doctors have applied to turn their GP surgery into flats ahead of the practice’s move to Highgate.

Yesterday, 14:14
Ash Court Care Centre in Kentish Town. Picture: Polly Hancock

A Filipino care home nurse who attacked four elderly dementia patients for soiling themselves has been jailed for 16 weeks.

Yesterday, 14:10
Far-right activists have planned a demonstration in Golders Green for July 4

Mike Free MP has added to calls for the home secretary and Met Police to ban a proposed rally by far-right groups in Golders Green, after Jewish community groups branded it “anti-Semitic” and “provocative”.

Most read news

Property Newsletter Sign-up

The latest North London property news and features straight into your inbox.

Other Emails:
Fields marked with a * are mandatory
Email Marketing by e-shot

Competitions

You could take in stunning views of London over brunch at the Sky Garden

Celebrate lighter, brighter days with the chance of winning an indulgent brunch for two with a bottle of bubbles at Darwin, the cool and casual brasserie 36 floors up at Sky Garden.

Time to experience the dizzy heights of London's tallest attraction!

Morgan Pryce, commercial property experts based in London are offering one lucky reader the chance to win a pair of tickets to The Shard viewing platform in the city itself.

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Hampstead & Highgate Express e-edition today E-edition
Family Notices 24


Our trusted business finder