study found mothers in the six counties to be more reliant on friends and
family to provide childcare support, while mothers in the Republic of Ireland
are more reliant on formal childcare services. Both regions provide children
with free universal pre-schooling.
to the ESRI, costs for childcare in Ireland and the UK are among the highest in
the OECD, but schemes such as the National Childcare Scheme in the Republic and
Universal Credit in the North are reducing these costs for lower-income
to the research, childcare workers in both jurisdictions are on relatively low
pay, with the sectors having a high staff turnaround. In Northern Ireland, the
report found a large gap in the qualifications, pay, and working conditions of
those in the private and voluntary childcare sectors, and those in the public
in the Republic of Ireland, the Core Funding Model and Employment Regulation
Orders have been implemented with the aim of tackling low pay, but the ESRI
said it is too early to measure the impact this will have on the sector.