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.


      • Why should it?

        • Why shouldn’t it?

          • +1

            @moo: Here’s one: having kids is a personal choice. If you can’t feed, educate or care for them then it’s not other people’s responsibility to subsidise that choice.

  • +2

    You sound like you've never held a job or know what is like to raise a human

  • +1

    I feel sorry for OP. Such a looser.

  • -1

    Because my boss is a b*tch. According to her, I get paid to "work", so I cannot look after kids, which isn't too bad if your state is not in lockdown. But if you are, then it's not like there's anything I can do, especially when both parent's have to WFH!!

  • +3

    LOL. I can't even make toast without my toddler trying to climb up my leg, I sure as shit can't chair meetings all day with a my toddler around.

    You CANNOT look after a young child while working from home.

    OP is clueless. Childcare is so very justified, as are the subsidies.

  • +5

    I have my daughter in childcare while working at home so I can work without being distracted as she needs to be looked after all day. She also learns too and mingles with other kids. My son is 6 and goes to school.

    I couldn't leave my 2 year old and feel safe working as I'd worry she would get hurt as I'm distracted working.

    I'm not sure if people grasp the reality of looking after little kids, you can't leave them for moments at a time you really gotta be there all the time.

    I could chose for her to be home but next to no work will be done any attending meetings would be extremely difficult.

    • +1

      I'm nervous leaving them alone in the play pen let alone roaming around.

  • +1

    I don't have kids but how naive must you be to think you can just put a 2 year old in front of the TV for 8 hours and not be disturbed from your work day or be actively involved in looking after them at all.

    • +1

      how naive must you be

      In my best Barney Stinson impression
      "Haaaaaaave you met SlavOz…."

  • +1

    wow you clearly dont have kids. if i dont send my son to daycare then my wife and i couldnt work. he requires constant attention and you cant just leave him in front of an ipad all day. second thing is he is actually learning while at daycare, his educators are great at what they do and we see him learning new stuff like that. even if we werent working we wouldnt have the skills to teach him as well as them. they arent just glorified babysitters like you think.

  • +1

    Because childcare fees are extortionate

  • +2

    Before I had my baby, I thought I’d be continuing my working from home job with her hanging around as well, and that I’d be super able to manage it because I’ve always been overloaded with full time work and full time study at the same time. Childcare is ridiculously expensive and like the little Old El Paso girl, I thought why don’t I have both?! I was very wrong.

    She’s one now, I am working from home and dad is staying home to care for her. She poops when I have a meeting, squeals in the background of every call, needs constant snacks, plus a least one outing to break up her day and keep her mood up. Dad is losing his mind a little with the demands and monotony, but it also makes more sense than sending her to care and him working for almost nothing.

    OP is simply naive to the true demands of looking after your own little person, which is fine and can only be understood through the experience.

  • +1

    Depending on the age of the kids, I'm in that situation where we had a 3/4 and 5/6 year old through WFH. If they were at home and weren't able to be looked after (what Childcare is for), there would be absolutely no working from home.

    You do have a right to question where your taxes go and I think it's fine to ask this question, unfortunately, a lot of people will feel attacked by the question as from their perspective (and mine), you don't really know what it's like to have a toddler who is solely dependent on an adult to look after them in every aspect. That's perfectly fine, everyone has a perspective on life and how things are, based on their own experiences.

    They're hungry: They can't open food packs or find things as we do, you have to get and prepare food for them
    They're bored: You need to prompt them for things they can do, or engage with. Their minds and imagination are still developing these sorts of skills
    They need to go to the toilet: They're either in nappies and need them cleaned, or need help in going to the toilet, no toddlers ever just go to the toilet by themselves, they have to announce it to everyone in the world first

    That's only a couple of things they need help with, let alone wanting your attention throughout the day, making noise, arguing with their siblings causing a non-stop distraction from work.

    One of the common solutions/workaround for some of the boredom and attention-seeking would be to throw them in front of the TV or the iPad, which I'm sure you and many others not in that situation would look down on as well. This time would be better spent learning life skills that prepare them for school and adult life, from motor skills to language, writing, reading. Do you know where they can learn these things while parents are working? Childcare.

    If there was no access to subsidized childcare for workers, workers would be forced out of the workforce to look after and teach their children… you know what happens then? They claim benefits from the government. Most employers were quite accomodating through some of the lockdown periods, children stuck at home with their parents while they're working. No one, absolutely no one can claim their work output wasn't affected to some degree with a dependent child at home with them. While employers were accomodating, it isn't exactly ideal for them, but they know it's only a temporary measure and some work output is better than none. That can't continue forever though.

    Working from home has some significant benefits in some situations, highly collaborative settings it's not exactly ideal, you need to be able to pop your head up to speak to people at a moment's notice, any roadblock to that leads to extra time and effort. There's also mismanagement of work output in general, without clear deliverables it's difficult to understand how someone is performing when they're working from home. It also allows employees to slack off with no oversight. I recently moved from a job that I was basically working from home permanently with little to no oversight of my work output. To one where I'm practically in an office most days, I require a lot of collaboration in my work so it's only sensible. Arranging work from home is a lot more tolerable these days and I approach it by working around collaboration and scheduling a backlog of work that doesn't require it and full focus on documentation/lone work.

    If my children were home on days like that, I wouldn't achieve as much as I could and there would be no benefit to working from home, it also wouldn't be tolerable from an employer perspective. There are significant benefits to having work from home capability.

    • No rush hour traffic to get to an office, can start earlier and get more done throughout the day
    • Ability to start early and achieve the same outputs, I can get a few things done around the house as well with that extra time, get that load of washing on and hung out, put the dishwasher on etc.
    • Get out for that exercise at lunch, go for a run etc. healthier lifestyle leads to better mental health and wellbeing = better work capacity and motivation
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