Child Care Gap Waivers Now Available for Cowper Coffs Coast Nambucca Valley by News Of The Area - Modern Media - August 30, 2021 THE Morrison Government has enacted a blanket rule that will allow child care centres to waive gap fees in regional NSW, now that the statewide lockdown has been in effect for over 8 days. It means services will have the option to waive gap fees for more Australian families impacted by COVID-19, when they keep their children home during lockdowns. The gap fee is the difference between the Child Care Subsidy (CCS) that the Government pays to a service and the remaining fee paid by the family. Minister for Education and Youth Alan Tudge said this aligns with recent changes that allow families to use additional allowable absence days, where child care services are in a location that has been declared a Commonwealth hotspot of more than seven days. “Together these changes provide certainty for families. “This will take some additional financial pressure off families who are struggling during COVID-19 lockdowns,” Minister Tudge said. “It is also good for services because it means families are less likely to pull their children out of care altogether and services still get the government subsidy, even if children aren’t attending. Pat Conaghan, Federal Minister for Cowper welcomed the gap fee waivers that build on the significant support being provided to businesses and families by the Commonwealth and State governments in response to the current COVID-19 situation. “The measures will give providers more certainty, to help them plan and keep their staff employed so business can continue as usual when the stay at home orders end,” Mr Conaghan said. “The Morrison Government is committed to supporting families and child care services through COVID-19”. Families experiencing a loss of income, such as casual workers or those in self-isolation, may also be eligible for extra support through the Additional Child Care Subsidy (temporary financial hardship). See the Department of Education, Skills & Employment website for more information relating to this and other Child Care support services: https://www.dese.gov.au/covid-19/childcare.