In the third of a series of briefings on Voice's Election Manifesto, we look at "The introduction of compulsory registration of nannies in the UK".
For many years, Voice has campaigned for nanny registration and greater regulation of nanny agencies not only because we believe that all those working with children and young people should be required to work to the same high standards and be subject to the same rigorous inspection regimes, but also to raise the professional profile of the home childcarer.
Voice is very concerned about the current voluntary registration system. There is little evidence to suggest that it has been valued by parents and we don't believe that many nannies have joined it.
A nanny has sole, unsupervised contact with children a highly responsible role. Parents often assume that nannies are registered and vetted, and many parents would be surprised to learn that often they are not.
It is about time that nannies were brought in from the cold and given the professional recognition and status they deserve.
If there can be a proposed compulsory register of parents who educate at home to protect children from possible abuse by their own parents why not one for childcarers who care for children in the home to protect children from possible abuse or neglect by a non-relative without training or experience calling themselves a 'nanny'? At the moment, anyone can call themselves a 'nanny'.
A single, compulsory UK national register for all working with children and young people would be much simpler and more effective than the current complicated, confusing plethora of compulsory and voluntary childcare registers. Unless a register is compulsory it can't be fully effective as not everyone will join.
Compulsory registration and regulation would also raise the status of professional, trained nannies and help to protect them from exploitation and working excessive hours.
Do you agree?