EDMONTON - Public Interest Alberta has launched a campaign for $10-a-day child care after the federal government announced a $30 billion dollar investment over the next 5 years, and both British Columbia and Nova Scotia have signed on.
The campaign aims to inspire Albertans to demand that the Kenney government reverse their damaging pattern of undercutting the child care sector, and work with the federal government to implement a national system of accessible, affordable, and high quality child care for every working family in Alberta that needs it.
“In a province where there are currently only enough licensed child-care spaces for one in seven children, $10-a-day child care is simply common sense,” said Bradley Lafortune, the Executive Director of Public Interest Alberta. “Child-care costs can be one of the largest household expenses — often as much as mortgage or rent. Reducing those costs to a more manageable amount would mean families can redirect those savings towards safe housing, healthy food, and planning for the future. In an economy where nearly half of all Canadians live paycheque-to-paycheque, these extra savings would be life-changing.”
“Access to child care means more parents can join the workforce, more children are lifted out of poverty, and better social and emotional development for the next generation,” said Lafortune. “$10-a-day child care means huge benefits for everyone, whether or not they have kids.”
To kick off the campaign, Public Interest Alberta put out a call to ask parents and caregivers what $10-a-day child care would mean for their family, and dozens of people sent in videos which they edited together to create a powerful campaign video.
“When my family immigrated to Canada from the Philippines, access to $10-a-day child care would have been life-changing for my single mother-led household,” said Mav Adecer, one of the people profiled in the campaign video. “Rather than being forced to pick up more shifts at her multiple retail jobs because of financial pressure, my mom could have spent more time with us. I participated in this campaign because I don’t want other families to go through the same hard choices.”
“This opportunity for our children, for women, and for families is too important to pass up,” added Lafortune. “It's about our collective future. Together, we can reach our goal of universally accessible, fully publicly funded and publicly delivered child care for every working family in Alberta, and across the country – but only if we organize for it.”