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HOME  > Past issues  > 2017 March 1 - 7  > Gov’t is too slow to achieve ‘zero’ waiting list to enter childcare centers: JCP Tamura
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2017 March 1 - 7 [SOCIAL ISSUES]

Gov’t is too slow to achieve ‘zero’ waiting list to enter childcare centers: JCP Tamura

March 4, 2017
Japanese Communist Party lawmaker Tamura Tomoko on March 3 urged the Abe government to build more public childcare centers in cooperation with local governments in order to resolve the serious issue of many children waiting for admission to daycare facilities.

At the Upper House Budget Committee session, Tamura pointed to the fact that as of the end of February, 40% of the applicants in Tokyo were refused admission to authorized nursery schools this spring. “Local governments know the exact number of children on the waiting lists. In collaboration with local authorities, the central government should implement an effective solution without delay,” she demanded.

Tamura went on to note that some municipalities are merging and even closing down public nurseries despite a large number of children in the waiting pool. She referred to the fact that the Abe administration set up a financial support program to help local governments streamline public facilities in 2015 and that a city in Osaka has a plan to integrate city-run childcare centers using that program. “The Abe government policy is encouraging the reduction of public daycare facilities,” she said.

Internal Affairs Minister Takaichi Sanae replied that the financial support program is not specifically intended to reduce the number of public day nurseries. Welfare Minister Shiozaki Yasuhisa said that “it is up to each municipality” whether to establish more childcare facilities.

JCP Tamura again stressed the urgent need to increase public daycare centers significantly to resolve the waiting list issue and ensure better childcare quality.

Past related article:
> JCP Tokyo assemblypersons’ group submits proposal calling for more authorized childcare centers [September 9, 2016]
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