“We’re in this situation where we’re stuck. My wife can’t work more until we have more childcare hours, but we can’t get the 30 hours until she works more.”
James*, 34, lives in Warwickshire with his partner Sarah*, 32, and their 3-year-old daughter, Olivia*.
James is an engineer for an energy company and Sarah is a part-time nanny.
The family don’t qualify for 30 hours childcare as Sarah doesn’t work enough hours, but she can’t work more hours until they have more childcare available.
James said: “Currently Olivia does 15 hours of nursery, so she goes two days a week. Because the free hours are term time only and our nursery is open all year, we have to pay for the shortfall plus food and other expenses.
“For us, sending Olivia to nursery before she was three didn’t make financial sense. Now we get the 15 hours my wife works one day a week and she’d love to do more, but we’re in this situation where we’re stuck. My wife can’t work more until we have more childcare hours, but we can’t get the 30 hours until she works more.
“Nursery is vital for Olivia’s socialisation, especially because of the pandemic and how much time we’ve spent at home. The policy just doesn’t make sense.”
*Names have been changed
Read more about people’s experiences with the 30 hour policy.
Want to change the government’s policy? Write to your MP using the simple tool on our page.