The childcare sector is in serious trouble according to a Federation Early Childhood Providers survey.

Childcare facilities have been closed since 13 March and are not due to reopen till 19 April at the earliest. 

A snap survey of 600 members conducted over five hours shows few providers are considering retaining staff on the Temporary Refund Scheme.

The results show that 53% of childcare providers said they would not survive, a key reason given for this was that short term borrowings could not be serviced by low-profit services. 

Less than 7% reported an intention to leave staff on payroll during the Covid-19 crisis. 

On Wednesday, Minister for Children announced new emergency measures to ensure childcare workers are paid in full, while parents won't have to pay crèche fees for three months.

The emergency measures will be in place for 12 weeks.

The aim of the measures is to ensure creches' can reopen once the crisis has passed and to provide assurance to parents and workers in the sector.

Meanwhile, the Children's Rights Alliance has written to Taoiseach Leo Varadkar suggesting solutions to potential problem areas for vulnerable families in the wake of the outbreak. ??

CEO Tanya Ward has said many children are finding themselves on the frontline because of the extraordinary circumstances.

Ms Ward has called on the Government to continue to engage with service providers, critically early years settings, to reach the youngest and most vulnerable children.??

She added: "There are other problem areas including child protection, both online and within the community, education and child poverty."