All children deserve a Fair Start in life. Yet, Jason Kenney’s approach to child care continues to leave many families behind
EDMONTON - Yesterday’s announcement from the UCP government of a one-time reimbursement for parents who paid for child care between April and December last year will help the limited number of families who qualify but is vastly inadequate for addressing the real issue of a lack of a quality child care system in Alberta.
“Parents need support right now, what was announced yesterday does not deliver. What they need right now is for our provincial government to begin making meaningful investment in a quality child care system for all Alberta and all families,” said Siobhan Vipond, secretary treasurer of the Alberta Federation of Labour. “A one-time payment to a limited number of families does nothing to build the universal system that we need to support all children, all families, all communities and all early childhood educators.”
Since being elected the UCP government have made various cuts to early learning and child care including cutting the Stay-at-Home parent subsidy, the Kin Child Care subsidy, the benefit contribution grant, the staff attraction incentive, the $25/day child care program, and the northern living allowance.
“We continue to question the decisions the UCP government have been making when it comes to funding, or rather not funding, child care in Alberta,” said Vipond, “including the multitude of cuts they have made since they were elected, most notably to the $25/day child care program which ends next month.”
Parents are now being left in the dark about quality, as the UCP have also recently cut Alberta accreditation for child care centers which helped assure parents that their children were getting high quality child care and have replaced it with a largely unenforceable statement in the recent legislation.
“The time to invest in a quality education program is now. Parents in Alberta will not be able to fully return to work or school or community volunteering without a comprehensive quality child care system available to them,” said Vipond. “Yesterday’s announcement is a drop in the bucket and out of touch with the reality of what children, families, workers and communities are currently facing.”
Director of Communications, AFL