Negotiations have begun between the Governments of Ontario and Canada on how Ontario’s share of the federal government’s $27 billion funding commitment will be used to bring down parent fees for regulated child care services, to expand the number of regulated spaces in the not-for-profit and public sectors, and to increase the compensation of early childhood educators.
Child care advocates across the province are taking action to ensure that the agreement reached is good for children, families and those who work in the sector.
The Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care and the Association of Early Childhood Educators of Ontario have launched a joint campaign to keep the pressure on the provincial government. Over 5,400 people have signed the petition calling on the Government of Ontario to sign on to the federal government’s proposal for a Canada-wide system of early learning and child care.
According to media reports, the Ontario government has not yet presented a detailed action plan, nor has it explained why the federal government’s offer of $10.2 billion is insufficient. Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care policy director Carolyn Ferns says that if the government needs help planning the future of child care in Ontario, it should consult the Roadmap to Universal Child Care in Ontario prepared by child care advocates. This Roadmap sets out the policy, legislative, and funding steps for transformational change in child care.