Still few childcare centres set up at workplaces
Until April this year, 83 childcare centres at workplaces had registered with the Welfare Department, said Women, Family and Community Development Deputy Minister Datuk Heng Seai Kie.
“Of this, 16 are in the private sector,” she said in her reply to a question by Datuk Halimah Mohd Sadique (BN-Tenggara) in the Dewan Rakyat.
In replying to a supplementary question by Halimah, Heng said one of the reasons why the figures were low was that employees were not keen on sending their children to such centres, especially if their workplace was far from their homes.
“According to research by the ministry, other reasons are that some companies do not have a suitable location for a centre, especially at factories dealing with dangerous chemicals, as well as the high cost involved,” she said.
Another reason, she added, was the difficulty in getting trained workers or babysitters for the centre.
When asked if the Government was planning to set up any institution or agency to train more babysitters, she said anyone could register online for a basic course.
She added that there were 40 agencies under the ministry that could provide the training.
Heng added that statistics showed the number of childcare centres had increased from 483 in 2010 to 1,086 until May this year – a 124% increase.