A number of creches and preschools are closing their doors today in a row over the future of the sector.
A protest will also take place outside Leinster House calling on the Government to increase funding. Local protests will also take place nationwide.
It means many parents are without childcare this morning as a result. The closures will continue for three days .
The Federation of Early Childhood Providers is organising the action.
Chair Elaine Dunne said 97 childcare providers have closed across the country since March this year.
“This is having a devastating effect,” she said.
“Our members have salaries to pay, alongside the cost of food and heating, utilities, bank charges, rates, maintenance and upgrade costs.
"If Government want childcare services and ECCE places to facilitate a healthy labour market and let people go to work, then adequate provision needs to be made.”
FECP members have said many providers can only afford to pay staff €13 an hour “due to such severe underfunding, although others are subsidising pay out of their own pockets”.
Ms Dunne said although the Government is “well-intentioned”, Children Minister O’Gorman’s core funding programme has failed.
But the Children's Minister does not believe the childcare sector is in crisis.
Roderic O'Gorman admitted here has been underinvestment in the past, and he will be seeking further funding in the Budget.