MEDIA RELEASE September 23, 2022
Child Care gets More Affordable in BC — Great News for Families
Promise made, promise kept. One year ago, BC signed the Canada-wide child care agreement promising to significantly reduce fees by December 2022. Today, the BC government delivered on that promise.
For families with young children, child care fees are often their second biggest expense after housing. The announcement today is a major step toward ensuring all families who choose child care pay no more than $10aDay. “This is a welcome investment in BC families and BC’s economy,” said Researcher Lynell Anderson.
Publicly funded fee reductions for the families of infants and toddlers in centre-based care are increasing from $350 to $900 per month — and the fee reduction for 3–5-year-olds in centre-based care is increasing from $100 to $545 per month. There are similar reductions for families using family and multi-age care. “This fee reduction is meaningful for our family” confirms mother of two young children, Sara Langlois. “It will significantly reduce the pressure on our family’s finances.”
Today’s announcement of increased affordability for families is in addition to the expansion of $10aDay to 12,500 spaces across the province.
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But too many families are still struggling to find a child care space — affordable or not. So, it’s more good news that capital funding is available to expand non-profit, public, and Indigenous child care programs. “We recommend a planned approach, with child care included in all schools and public buildings” confirms $10aDay spokesperson Sharon Gregson.
However, the biggest child care challenge right now is the recruitment and retention of qualified early childhood educators. “The $4/hour publicly funded wage enhancement is certainly helpful but needs to transition to a fair, province-wide wage grid, with benefits, as part of improved compensation for early childhood care and education professionals,” said Emily Mlieczko of ECEBC.
We applaud today’s announcement and look forward to ongoing progress toward full implementation of the $10aDay child care system BC wants and needs.