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The ‘Mind the Gap-Raise the Cap’ campaign aims to raise the maximum weekly amount a working parent can exchange from their salary for childcare vouchers from £55 to £75.
The campaign was launched last year by childcare voucher provider Busy Bees Benefits and their e-petition, which so far has 17,500 signatures, is due to close on 21 March 2013.
Busy Bee Benefits are campaigning for an increase in the amount of salary parents can exchange for childcare vouchers, which can be used to pay for any registered childcare for children up to the age of 15, and has not changed since 2006.
John Woodward, managing director of Busy Bees said: “The scheme provides essential financial support for many working parents who want to access quality care for their children. A recent survey showed that 1 in 3 parents who responded were influenced in their decision to return to work by the provision of childcare vouchers.”
Childcare vouchers are an employee benefit as they are non-taxable and National Insurance exempt, helping working parents save money on the cost of childcare. The salary sacrifice scheme allows parents to exchange up to £55 per week but campaigners are hoping to raise the cap to £75 in order to bridge the gap forming between this and the rising cost of childcare.
If the increase goes ahead, basic tax payers could see savings of over £300 more per parent per year as a result of the raised cap. With both parents in a household able to join a childcare voucher scheme, over £1200 could be saved a year depending on circumstances.
Mr Woodward said: “It is important that childcare providers play their part in helping parents to save money by supporting the ‘Mind the Gap – Raise the Cap’ campaign and telling parents that they should ask their employer about the childcare voucher scheme.”
For more information about the campaign, visit http://www.busybeesbenefits.com/misc/petition.php.