The childcare worker's union in Australia says the sector needs an injection of $A1.4 billion every year from the federal government to increase wages and retain staff.
National secretary Louise Tarrant said in a statement that members are passionate about the industry, but they don't stay because the wages are too low.
NSW secretary Mark Boyd told AAP the average pay was $A18 - $A20 per hour and $A26, $A27 (per hour) was probably needed for people to stay.
"The reason why they don't stay is because of the wages and ... they can go off into other teaching jobs and make more money," he said.
Mr Boyd said a boost in funding from the federal government would help the sector retain staff.
"Our ask from the federal government is $A1.4 billion, every budget."