Why Are People Paying for Childcare While WFH?

Since most parents rely on childcare subsidies, I guess the question could also be "why are WE (the taxpayer) paying for childcare even though it's not currently needed?"

This has me genuinely curious. Everyone I talk to at work is constantly on about dropping off or picking up their kids from daycare, but I feel too awkward to ask why they're paying for someone to take care of their kids while they're at home everyday anyway. I'm assuming it's because they prefer not to be bothered by their kids while working, which makes sense, but I just don't see why they should still be getting subsidised for that. There are lots of things which would make life easier while WFH but the line has to be drawn between essential public services vs unnecessary luxuries. If parents can't even ship their kids off to school, why are they allowed to unload them onto daycare at the taxpayers's expense?

I'm sure there are some parents who genuinely need daycare while WFH, but let's not pretend that this is the majority.

EDIT - after considering all replies, I have come to appreciate the dire need for daycare centres in this country. Some people really shouldn't be taking care of children.

I would also like to clarify that I do NOT have kids, however this doesn't mean I don't have a right to question where my taxes go. Everyone has a right to propose how their own money should be spent.


          • @Blitzfx:

            Sounds like it might be time to put him in a home etc where he has access to help when needed, if something does happen to him

            Yup, what's so incorrect about that?

            You mean where the OP later asked about carer options?

            And here

            Aged Residential (Nursing) Home: Basic Daily Fee, RAD, Income & Assets Assessment


            I don't think that comment proved your point ;)

            • @spackbace: They said gramps is about to be discharged. At that specific point in time, the only support they have available is themself. There is no immediate support from the state for their grandpa in that time frame. Did you even read the follow up comments, or the aged care information page?

              There's nothing "incorrect" about your quote, nor is it the part where you are judging them. Typical of you to avoid the main point, just like you avoided the most interesting questions

              • -1

                @Blitzfx: Sorry, do you have a point from the last 2 years? Or have you just bookmarked my 2019 comments with some sort of fanboi fascination?

                For someone who doesn't post much, you seem to have an unusual obsession with my 2019 comments. Or were you just obsessing over me that year?

                • @spackbace: The date and time are irrelevant in this context. Just conveniently spaced examples of your hypocrisy criticizing someone else of being judgemental when you yourself are one.

    • +4

      Agreed with your comment until you threw the "cis" in there. The words male and female don't require a prefix.

      • I actually don't even use it in everyday language, but felt it was a lil appropriate considering how close-minded OP has been in previous posts

  • +5

    Considering the wait lists for childcare, clearly the government has decided that for the period of the lockdown, it's is advantageous to ensure people are still able to utilise child care (whether they meet your level of 'need' due to WFH or not). This would be ensuring that they can return to regular work at the conclusion of the restrictions, without losing their current spot in childcare.

    If they did remove them from childcare and the childcare centres then hired less staff, the same funds would end up just being required for Centrelink anyway due to unemployed child care workers

    • +4

      I'm pretty sure SlavOz is smarter than the entire government. /s

    • Childcare should be nationalised like schools anyway.

  • +6

    IMHO If the government became a childcare provider, even after the usual overheads and inefficiencies of government run programs it would still be cheaper than the full subsidy and rorting that's going on.

    It's Kind of like the government paying private schools to look after their kids, while the school charges full rates to the parents highly inefficient and geared towards making big money.

    • +2

      There are providers that are community based and are business units of local governments

      • +1

        which are probably there because those particular suburbs are the least profitable so the private centres focus on other areas. socialise the costs privatise the profits.

  • +16

    whats next
    - paid parental leave? "I don't plan on having kids"
    - smoko breaks ? "I work more because i care about my health and don't smoke"
    - subsidised health care ? "i pay a levy every year but i don't use any medical services because i am healthy"
    - negative gearing ? "people on higher salaries pay less tax than i do"-

      • +33

        Private schools are taxpayer funded…

        • +13

          They would know this if they had a kid…

        • +1

          In fact I'm pretty sure they get more funding than public…

          • +1

            @MissG: Overall, private schoolsget more funding, but most private schools will get less funding than public of the same size/area.

      • +7

        why not have private school taxpayer funded as well?

        You may want to sit down, because I have some news on this that may shock you…

  • +11

    If you're trying to make a purely economic argument, and wondering why your tax dollars are paying to look after someone else's kids - you might need to reframe your thinking about childcare slightly - its not necessarily just a subsidy and a taxpayer drain, but also an economic investment.

    If we did see a reduction in the subsidy, this could see a number of people essentially take time off to look after their kids. This could have a flow on effect of a reduced economic output, and higher unemployment. This is at a time when as a national economy, we are trying to avoid all of those things.

    Thats also not considering the administrative overhead to stop, start, pause and message to everyone involved about changes to subsidies for a relatively short term event.

    If you're making the argument parents should be able to look after their own children while working from home - I'd say you are absolutely fooling yourself if you think you can do both well at the same time.

    • some people like to see the world burrnn

    • +3

      My thought process before having kids: "How hard is it to look after your own kids?"
      My thought process after having kids: "OMFG it's daycare day!!!! Pop the champagne"

  • +32

    It's SlavOz, people. You might want to check his post history before engaging in some nuanced discussion.

  • +1

    It's easily the majority that need it. Do you think looking after a toddler involves giving them an iPad for 8 hours and telling them to entertain themselves?

    Or are you one of those people who thinks getting 3 hours work done in a day is a successful day and you've got plenty of time for other stuff while you're at home?

    You can't just leave a toddler for a couple of hours to get some work done, even if it's inside your own home.

      • +4

        Now I know where all the kids who can’t even read or count before starting school come from.

        Buy some noise cancelling headphones. I won’t even complain about you deducting them on your taxes and me having to pay for you not having double glazed windows.

  • +31

    Another quality shitpost by slav

  • +16

    Wait, why are we as taxpayers paying for your medical bills again? https://www.ozbargain.com.au/node/599881

    Wait, why are we as taxpayers paying for your toll relief? https://www.ozbargain.com.au/node/542114

    • -11

      In short, because I fall within the scope of why those subsidies were introduced in the first place. Healthcare exists because people get sick and there is no other way to become unsick. Childcare subsidies exist because parents shouldn't be forced to choose between caring for their kids and going to work. Due to the fact that we're WFH, that's no longer the case for them. They don't have to choose. They can do both.

      If there was a way for my health issues to be resolved without medical intervention, then I'd be happy for you to question why I should still be subsidised for something I'm choosing, rather than something I absolutely need.

      Hope that helps.

      • +2

        So are you saying people working from work is not doing any productive work, and are free to look after their kids ?

        I didn't know travelling to work suddenly makes one productive

        Say you are out getting quotes for a car insurance and the representative on phone put you on hold 10 times to talk to his/her toddler, will you be happy ? Going by what you said he or she should not take any subsidy and keep the child home !!

      • +5

        They don't have to choose. They can do both.

        Your whole argument is based on this assumption. It may be true for you, it may be true for a number of people. That doesn't make it true for everyone.

      • +3

        They don't have to choose. They can do both.

        You are a legitimate goose.

        • OP is the epitome of "tell me you've not had to take care of toddlers while WFH without telling me".

      • +1

        Due to the fact that we're WFH, that's no longer the case for them. They don't have to choose. They can do both.

        why do you assume everyone's job is as simple or as mundane as yours?

      • +14

        How do you think WFH actually works? My friends that have family literally shut their "office" door during work hours and do not come out except at lunch and breaks. That is literally what WFH is- doing your normal job in a different location. They cannot do that job and look after kids at the same time.

        I have friends in a low position such as IT support. Should they tell the caller to wait because their kid is crying? I have friends in managerial positions in the big 4. Should they pause their board meeting to wipe up spilt juice? Do you realize how ridiculous you sound?

        For someone who's family spent years moving around immigration camps, and lived in housing commissions and tax payer money for 10 years+, you seem to have a very strong opinion on the do's/don'ts of social welfare?

        Disclaimer: I don't have kids, I don't work from home. Just about half my income technically would go to tax. I am happy to pay tax for childcare.

      • Childcare subsidies exist because parents shouldn't be forced to choose between caring for their kids and going to work

        Bingo, that's the misunderstanding. You have literally made up a reason as to why we have child care subsidies. The stated purpose, not your opinion, is to help make early learning and education available to families - absolutely nothing about this is changed due to WFH.

      • Childcare subsidies exist because parents shouldn't be forced to choose between caring for their kids and going to work.

        I think you could rephrase that as "Childcare exists to ensure parents can do productive work" and then realise why it still is important.

        • -3

          You do realise kids aren't the only obstacle to doing productive work? Everyone has problems and commitments that could interfere with their work. Why is the government funding your problems but not mine?

  • +1

    Childcare subsidies exist because parents shouldn't be forced to choose between caring for their kids and going to work. Due to the fact that we're WFH, that's no longer the case for them. They don't have to choose. They can do both.

    oh really? parent of the year and employee of the month material right there.

  • +1

    you can't work around kids unless you actively ignore them.

  • +10

    Haha I can tell you don't have young kids, no way you're getting any work done with them around.

    • -6

      By thus logic you probably never go on holidays or do anything for fun.

      How can you with kids to take care of?

      • +13

        I'm not sure how it is where you work, but where I am, I actually have tasks to complete. Looking after kids stops you from completing these tasks. On holiday you don't have tasks to complete, literally the entire thing is taking care of the kids. Taking care of kids sure can be fun, but if you are doing it, you aren't working.

        • +28

          Shhh, common-sense isn't allowed around OP's shitposts

      • +2

        You should live life more and gain life experiences, rather than over thinking from observations, hearsay, anecdotal evidence, etc…

        The world is significantly more diverse than what you think. Not everyone is like you or the people you hang out with in real life.

      • Yes OP because most people fit in your little narrow sphere of lifestyle of choices. We are lucky that Australia has a relative high social/health/welfare program to cater for different families with different needs, if childcare was less accessible more people would not be returning to work especially during this time, most of whom will be women who are already impacted by wage/super disparities during their lives. Higher workforce participation benefits everyone, so stop your whinging and open up your mind a little.

  • +4

    This has to be a troll post

    • I used to think that with earlier SlavOz posts but as time goes on I'm starting to think they genuinely feel what they are expressing.

  • When the lockdowns first happened and it was closed schools and forced WFH.

    I have 2 young kids and it was not conducive to work at all.

    They scream, fight, cry, barge into the room, even if you get a moment's respite, the threat of a war breaking out can happen any time.

    • -3

      If childcare workers can take care of kids with a ratio that massively outnumbers them, how do you possibly justify saying you cant take care of 1 or 2 of your own kids?

      • because X number of trained childcare workers can take care of X + Y number of kids, you concluded that it's ok for 2 parents to be able to take care of their own kids while concurrently performing a full time job?

      • If childcare workers can take care of kids with a ratio that massively outnumbers them, how do you possibly justify saying you cant take care of 1 or 2 of your own kids?

        Of course you are right.

        I am a horrible parent.

      • +1

        And why can't a taxi driver complete 20 trips in the time a bus driver takes to do one? The bus driver is massively outnumbered by passengers!

        It scales. You can keep an eye on multiple children at once. You can give them the same writing exercise to do and help the ones that get stuck. You can give one set of instructions once and all the children do it instead of telling them all to do it individually. A bus can deliver multiple people at once.

        If you give 1 child something to do that takes an hour and they ask for help when they get stuck, you're going to get interrupted 10 times in that hour and help them for a few seconds each time. That means you get basically no work done, can't be on a call, can't focus, despite it only being one kid. You can't tell them to save all their issues for a 10 minute period that you've scheduled for them.

      • +3

        This is one of the dumbest things I've read all week, and that is saying something.

  • +9

    Nice troll post.

    • +7

      It not his first one.

    • +5

      I admire the way he keeps the trolling going by repeating the same incorrect ideas over and over again even though they're wrong.

      • Same logical fallacies with different personas.

        This is indeed a doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. - Definition of insanity

    • +8

      The worst thing is he doesn't even know he's trolling.

      Australia is definitely the land of opportunity though, OP is living proof that even clueless individuals can make it in this country.

      OP you are a testament to the saying that Australia is the Lucky Country.

      • Australia is the Lucky Country.

        Not sure, it is Lucky for Australia tbh.

  • +21

    As a parent, today I have found out that I can only hand out 5 negative votes in 24 hours.

    Those 5 negative votes should only count as one since I'm only handing them out to one person!

    • It is funny how these ~28-30yr olds with strong opinions about things they have not experienced yet in life can ruffle one's feathers, eh? :)

    • I’m sure you are not alone, considering the number of -votes issued to OP’s comments.

  • +2

    It’s working from home OP. Not working for home!

  • +1

    If you are asking this question you definitely don't have kids. Maybe you have a pet dog?

    Imagine your pet dog barking non stop and having to be minded around the clock because they might eat anything and everything which might mean an expensive trip to the vet or even worse…now imagine trying to focus to get work done or being in an online face to face conference.

    For me, (and I think most adults, heck even most teenagers) I could understand just with a few minutes of thought why it's very difficult to mind children whilst working from home…unless of course your job doesn't entail much actual 'work'…

      • +9

        You're comparing and saying owning and caring for a dog is equivalent to looking after and raising a child?
        That's the summary you're going for…

        The trolly-ness just keeps getting stronger..

        • +1

          It's not troll-ness. Just a terrible tone-deafness coupled with assumption that the same flawed argument repeated over and over, will eventually win him a discussion.

        • -2

          You're comparing and saying owning and caring for a dog is equivalent to looking after and raising a child?

          I would urge you to have this discussion among a group of dog lovers/pet enthusiasts (even ones with children) and see how much sympathy you get.

          Perhaps most people aren't as emotionally attached to their dogs as they are to their children, but the care and monitoring required is certainly on par. The only reason it might seem easier to care for dogs is because it's socially acceptable to leave your dog tied up and alone all day, even though it's extremely unhealthy for them. If you locked your kid in a cage all day, of course it would be easy as well.

          • @SlavOz: Kids aren't equivalent to pets in any way. Keep telling yourself they are though.

          • @SlavOz:

            I would urge you to have this discussion among a group of dog lovers/pet enthusiasts

            You do know that there are people out there with both children and dogs right?
            Maybe those people would be great to ask and see whether your equivalency is accurate.

            As one, it's not.
            How tiny and insulated is your view of the world?

            Trolling level = Trolling level +1

            • @SBOB: Yep small kids are so much harder, the pets settle down pretty quickly and can fend for themselves 95% of the time and tend not to try jump from dangerous heights or get into laundry cupboards full of toxic chemicals while needing constant attention. The dog and the cat have both passed away, the rabbit's the last man standing but he'll be the last pet we have for at least another 5 years.

  • +12

    Work From Home assumes you can work. Having a toddler around means you will not be able to work for more than 5 minutes without having to resolve a tantrum, feed him or take care of the fact he gets bored faster that a young Beagle (dog reference for OP, since apparently dogs and kids are the same thing care-wise).

    I remember being 30yrs old, thinking I knew everything about kids because someone in the family had them. Then I have had my own, and no, I did not understand jack#@$%.

    I am waiting for OP to bring up the fact he held a child once, so he can now determine how disruptive they can be.
    By the way, a good topic for the next troll post: Public healthcare system - is it a waste of my tax money? Everyone I know is a young adult with corpo job and a private health fund?

    • -4

      There are no alternatives to healthcare, and if people don't get it they'll die.

      Please don't compare that to parents wanting a taxpayer funded holiday from their kids every day.

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