Child care services to get hundreds of millions in budget boost: report

Child with teddy bear

The government will push a total of 920 million euros extra into youth care over the next four years, is stated the Spring Memorandum that will be presented later his month, sources in The Hague told newspaper AD.

This year the Dutch municipalities will receive an extra 350 million euros for youth care, followed by 190 million euros per year in the next three years. The government hopes that municipalities will be able to eliminate the deficits they have with this extra money.

Municipalities took over the responsibility for youth care in 2015. In that year the government also made cuts to the care budget. Since the municipalities got the task, the youth care budget shrank by 450 million euros, according to AD.

Last week the Volkskrant reported that municipalities are forced to make major budget cuts in other areas in order to cope with the extra care tasks. Some municipalities are even considering closing libraries or spending less on road maintenance. According to the newspaper, the municipalities fall a total amount of around 600 million euros short. 

The problem is exasperated by the increased demand for youth care. Last year a total of 428 thousand kids and young people up to the age of 23 were aided by youth care in some way. That is an increase of 13 percent since the reorganization in 2015.

According to Ministers Hugo de Jonge of Public Health and Wopke Hoekstra of Finance, this extra amount is enough to be able to help anyone who now applies for youth care and to eliminate the backlogs, AD writes.