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Swedish towns to offer 'night time' childcare

Swedish towns to offer 'night time' childcare

Published: 23 Aug 2012 07:38 GMT+02:00
Updated: 23 Aug 2012 07:38 GMT+02:00

Over the course of 2012 a record number of childcare facilities catering for inconvenient hours will be opened across Sweden, according to a new survey carried out by news agency TT.

“I think that it's just a matter of time before all municipalities will offer childcare for inconvenient hours,” said Per-Arne Andersson of the Swedish Association of Local Authorities and Regions (SALAR) to news agency TT.

In several of Sweden’s 290 municipalities there is a growing need for parents who are working odd hours to receive child care for early mornings, evenings, overnight or on weekends. This year, for the first time, the majority of Swedish municipalities will be providing this form of service.

Up until this year, not even half of Sweden’s municipalities were able to offer this, but this year almost 30 municipalities are opening up inconvenient hour facilities, making it 160 municipalities across Sweden in total.

“It is really important that child care is adapted to the needs that working life are creating. It seems that more and more local authorities are starting to follow the law,” said deputy minister for education, Nyamko Sabuni to TT.

Among those municipalities that won’t be offering the service this year, two are planning it for next year, and many of the smaller municipalities have answered that there is no demand in their community.

TT/The Local/rm (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

10:23 August 23, 2012 by Abe L
Very positive development - it's another sign that Swedes are starting to realize that irregular hours will slowly become the norm rather then the exception and that public services such as childcare need to operate outside of default business hours as well. With a bit of luck we'll also start seeing public transportation running at night in the near future and being able to visit a dentist in the evening so you don't have to take time of work.
13:27 August 23, 2012 by Puffin
A bit puzzled as this is not a new development at all - "nattis" (night time daycare) has certainly been available since at least the 1990s.

The main problem is that there is no duty to provide out of hours daycare - despite the huge demand. Successive governments have refused to make it compulsory with the consequences that many single parents are essentially excluded from the job market if the only work they can find involves shift or weekend working.
14:52 August 23, 2012 by Darwinder
Nattis has maybe been available for some time in larger cities but I can assure you as a married couple in the hospitality industry that works primarily nights it has been nothing but an uphill struggle to find somewhere for our daughter. All the late night places here in Gothenburg have huge waitlists and my wife ended up quiting her job for a much less paying dayjob so that we could make it work with daggis. Now I am just waiting for a 24 hour supermarket and maybe I will believe Sweden is coming around. They got a pretty nice slap this year though when they realized that perhaps taking 2 months off every year and retiring at 60 doesnt work and now people have to work to 75 on average.
15:13 August 23, 2012 by Puffin
Perhaps Darwinder there could be a career opportunity to open a nattdagis or as an out of hours childminder

But yes I know that many kommuns don't like them as they are more expensive - noticble that private companies don't provide this
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