Early Childhood Education and Care gives women greater freedom of choice for work, and can help them achieve their potential.
Women with children without access to affordable high-quality child care are often forced to turn down promotions or take part-time jobs. In fact, 68% of all part-time workers in Alberta are women, according to a 2018 Statistics Canada analysis, and caring for children is a key reason why they work part-time.
Some women have no choice but to leave the workforce, which hurts their economic security, career development and lifetime earnings.
In an evaluation of the $25-a-day Early Learning and Child Care Centres, parents reported having greater freedom of choice for career, work and school arrangements — meaning, women were empowered to choose full or part-time work, seek additional education, volunteer in their communities and start businesses. The reduced financial burden allowed families greater financial security.
Women with access to Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) have greater ability to choose what’s right for them and their family. ECEC can help women achieve their potential.
But now with the UCP government in power, Premier Jason Kenney has offered absolutely no plan on child care. The UCP platform released on March 30, 2019 offered zero explanation of their plan for child care. When asked, his position on child care in follow-up interviews, Jason Kenney has said the UCP will “maintain current child care supports and create new spaces by cutting red tape on operators, while not jeopardizing safety.” It begs the question: what regulations can be cut that will not jeopardize the safety of our children?
We are calling on the government to support a strong economy that includes women to:
- Recognize the positive impact access to child care has on women and gender equity.
- Expand access to high-quality centre-based child care.
- Create a concrete plan with clear timelines to build a universal system of early childhood education and care in Alberta.
This year, our Fair Start campaign for universal child care focuses on the benefits for women. Learn more.