In Australia the federal government is claiming victory over childcare providers pocketing money for caring for their own children while being paid to look after others.
“Child-swapping” scammers rorted the system of $7.7m a week, the education minister Simon Birmingham said.
“Perpetrators of fraud are on notice: you will be caught and there are severe consequences, including the possibility of jail time,” Birmingham said.
“These family day care services were designed to support parents who wanted to care for their own children, in their own home while earning a small income.
“It was not envisaged that this opportunity would ultimately rip almost $8m a week off of Australian parents and taxpayers.”
The state president of the Australian Childcare Alliance New South Wales, Nesha O’Neil, said those carers claiming for their own children were depriving others by dipping into a limited bucket of funds.
“Anyone in receipt of government subsidies needs to be accountable,” she told the Seven Network’s Sunrise program on Sunday.
“So closing the loopholes and stopping the rorting and prosecuting people to the full extent of the law means that the taxpayer funds set aside for early childhood will be used properly.”
For the full story see The Guardian (January 3rd 2016)