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Additional Child Care Subsidy (child wellbeing)

Additional Child Care Subsidy (child wellbeing) provides additional child care fee assistance to an individual (or provider) for children at risk of serious abuse or neglect. It helps to address cost barriers families may experience so that children can either enter or remain engaged with child care.

For the purposes of Additional Child Care Subsidy (child wellbeing), a child is taken to be at risk of serious abuse or neglect if the child is at risk of experiencing harm as a result of current or past circumstances or events that resulted in the child being subject to, or exposed to, any of the following:

  • serious physical, emotional or psychological abuse
  • sexual abuse
  • domestic or family violence
  • neglect.

The definition of ‘at risk’ includes situations where the child is likely to experience those circumstances in the future (for example, the future risk is real and apparent). This allows families to be eligible for the subsidy at the appropriate earliest point and potentially before they are known to a child protection agency.

Any child who is identified as being at risk under state or territory child protection law will meet the definition of at risk and the individual (or provider) will therefore be eligible to receive the payment.

The Minister’s Rules set out in detail the circumstances when a child is taken to be at risk of serious abuse or neglect for the purposes of Additional Child Care Subsidy (child wellbeing). The Guide to Additional Child Care Subsidy (child wellbeing) provides more detail on the administration of this subsidy. This section provides a summary only and we recommend visiting those resources for more detailed guidance.

In certain cases, a provider may identify a child at risk of neglect or abuse who meets relevant criteria but may be unable to identify a parent or carer who is eligible for Additional Child Care Subsidy (child wellbeing). In these cases, as a last resort, the provider may be eligible for Additional Child Care Subsidy (child wellbeing)—provider eligible arrangement. This arrangement will end once the child is no longer at risk or where an eligible individual is identified.

Provider eligibility for Additional Child Care Subsidy (child wellbeing) recognises that in some situations, in the interest of caring for a child at risk whose parent or carer cannot be identified, the provider will be incurring the costs of child care. Further information is available in the Guide to Additional Child Care Subsidy (child wellbeing).