Nanny manifesto launched

Nannies are calling for regulation of the industry and subsidies to create a more level playing field between at home care and formal childcare settings.

Illustration showing nanny with children

 

Nannies are getting political as they seek more protections and subsidies for the profession. Amid the party politicking ahead of the general election, the National Nanny Association has issued its own manifesto, saying the industry is under threat due to a preference for regulated childcare settings and calling for recognition and support for the industry to ensure that at-home flexible care remains an option for parents.

The manifesto compares the threat to the nanny industry with the demise of another at-home, personalised care service, au pairs. It calls for the status of nannies to be raised in line with others in the sector and for nannies to be recognised as essential childcare professionals.

It also wants to see the launch of campaigns to highlight the benefits of hiring nannies and says Government subsidies and incentives are predominantly directed towards formal settings, marginalising┬áthe nanny sector and limiting the diversity of the childcare offer. It adds that rising costs and lack of financial support “are making it increasingly difficult for families to afford nannies”.

The Association, which is holding an exhibition on the history of the British nanny in London on 13th July, would like to see the nanny industry integrated into the broader early years infrastructure and says “nannies are time and time again not included or almost forgotten. This needs to be addressed so that choice is preserved for families.”

Tax incentives

The manifesto says that, to widen people’s choice, requires tax incentives for employing nannies through tax-free childcare or vouchers, and Government subsidies for low and middle income families. Another demand is for a proper legal and regulatory framework for nannies to “support the unique nature of nanny services, to protect and safeguard children, to strengthen labour rights, including employment contracts, access to health insurance, paid leave and clarity in job expectations, and to preserve a minimum standard of care across the whole of the early years sector, whether home-based or in a setting”.

Finally, the Association, led by Maria Culley, co-founder of the Road to Nanny Regulation campaign, calls for more investment in professional development and high quality training for nannies and for a national nanny association. It states: ” In an unregulated industry, nannies are being left to fend for themselves. This encourages lazy practice across the board. This needs to change. A dedicated association can represent the interests of nannies in policy discussions, ensuring their voices are heard and included within the early years sector.”

 



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