The Australian Government Department of Education has declared a Child Care Subsidy period of emergency for families and services in the Shire of Broome (WA) and the Shire of Derby-East Kimberley (WA) and Victoria Daly Regional Council area (NT) for the period 6 January 2023 to 17 January 2023.
This follows the activation of Commonwealth and State disaster recovery funding to support communities impacted by the flooding.
The following support will be immediately available for early childhood education and care services and families in affected regions during the period of emergency:
- Services can continue to get Child Care Subsidy (CCS) if they close as a direct result of the emergency.
- Services can waive gap fees if a child doesn’t attend, or their service is closed, during the emergency.
- Children will get unlimited allowable absences for the duration of the period of emergency.
The following support will be available to help services and families recover:
- Families may be able to access additional absences, if they’ve exhausted their allowable absences, after the emergency.
- Families experiencing temporary financial hardship due to an emergency that happened in the last 6 months may be eligible for Additional Child Care Subsidy. Families should apply through their Centrelink online account.
- The Community Child Care Fund (CCCF) special circumstances grant helps services stay open when something unexpected happens, such as an emergency. Affected services should apply after an event has occurred and they have accessed other disaster support.
Details of the support available are on the Australian Government Department of Education’s website.
The Australian Government provides payments and help for people affected by natural disasters. Learn if you’re eligible for support on the Services Australia website.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Education, Jason Clare:
“The flooding emergency is ongoing. The Government’s focus remains firmly on responding to and managing the immediate crisis in coordination with the Western Australian and Northern Territory governments and local authorities in flood-affected regions.
“The period of emergency declared by my Department will ensure important support is made available to early childhood education and care services and families.
“We will continue to monitor the situation very closely and take further action, where appropriate.”
“The flooding experienced by residents in the Kimberley region, particularly in Broome and the Fitzroy River catchment is unprecedented. The Australian Government is committed to supporting families, residents and early childhood education services in what will be a very significant recovery effort.”
“Providing support for families through continued access to services will assist with the wider recovery process still to come and is important for the needs of all children in flood-affected regions and communities in Western Australia.”