Lucy Powell, Labour’s Childcare and Children Minister, visited Milton Keynes this week to meet staff and parents at the Moorlands Centre in Beanhill.
She joined Labour’s Andrew Pakes and Councillor Hannah O’Neill for a tour of the centre and to launch a new Childcare Survey looking at everything from cost to opening hours.
Parents in the South East face huge bills as the region has the most expensive childcare outside of London.
Andrew Pakes, Labour’s candidate in Milton Keynes South, has been campaigning for cheaper childcare and better access and says the survey will help to get an up-to-date snapshot of local concerns.
He said: “As a growing city, affordable and flexible childcare is one of the biggest issues facing families in Milton Keynes. It was great to have Lucy visit the borough and to see some of the amazing work going on in Beanhill and neighbouring estates.
“Childcare is an issue that keeps coming up and we need to make it affordable for parents, Labour’s pledge to offer working parents of three and four year olds25 hours of free childcare would help but we need to find out what else isn’t working.”
The Labour Party has pledged to introduce guaranteed wraparound childcare places before and after school for primary school children, the party would also introduce 10 extra hours of free childcare provision for working parents of three and four-year-olds, this would be paid for by an increase in the Bank levy.
Lucy Powell MP, Labour’s Shadow Children’s Minister said: “It was inspiring to meet staff and parents with Andrew at the Moorlands Centre and to hear more about all the work that goes on in Beanhill. This is clearly an important facility and underlines the importance of providing childcare facilities in the heart of local communities.
“Labour’s new policies would make a big difference to hard pressed parents, guaranteeing before and after school care and an extension of free childcare from 15 to 25 hours which is worth over £1500 for working parents of three and four year olds.”