A third of disabled children missing out on holiday childcare

One in three parents of disabled children received no holiday childcare during summer 2011, according to a survey conducted by KIDS in partnership with Mencap.

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One in three parents of disabled children received no holiday childcare during summer 2011, according to a survey conducted by KIDS in partnership with Mencap.

The survey of 1,192 parents from across England also found that one in 10 disabled children were refused a place in a nursery because of their impairments.

The lack of affordable, appropriate childcare was cited as a major reason that 43% of parents surveyed were unemployed.

Ahead of half-term holidays next week the two charities called on councils to improve their childcare provision to meet the requirements of families with disabled children, who have been amongst the hardest hit by cuts to local authority budgets. Welcoming the recently announced £300m  by government for childcare, KIDS and Mencap urged local authorities to use this to make reasonable adjustments so that all children can access good quality childcare.

David Congdon, Mencap head of campaigns and policy, said: “Local authorities have a duty to provide sufficient childcare, which should be a universal service. Too often families of disabled children are let down during the holidays because of the inability of local authorities to provide suitable childcare for a fair price. We hope that the recently announced additional funding for childcare will reach disabled children and their families as a priority.”

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