EDMONTON - In response to the announcement of a child care agreement between the Alberta provincial government and the federal government, Public Interest Alberta’s Executive Director, Bradley Lafortune, issued the following statement:
“Today is a momentous day for working families in Alberta. Advocates have been striving for decades to build a national system of high quality, accessible and affordable child care.
“The federal plan for $10-a-day child care is a gamechanger for Alberta. Families have been struggling for too long making rent or mortgage-sized payments to get decent care for their children, during a time when many people are struggling to make ends meet.
“Far too many women have had to make the difficult decision to leave the workforce because of sky-high child care costs, and COVID has only deepened the ‘she-cession’. If we want to build back better coming out of the pandemic, then we need a recovery that puts women first. And this framework agreement begins to set the stage for that kind of recovery.
“This agreement is wonderful news, and long overdue. Finally, after months of political games which kept Alberta parents in limbo, the Kenney government has listened to parents and to Alberta’s child care activists to sign an agreement.
“We at Public Interest Alberta, alongside our dedicated task force of child care advocates will be reading the agreement very closely to ensure that it not only sets Alberta up to create a truly affordable system, but also a system that is high quality through investment into the child care workforce’s wages and training, and accessible to all working families who need it. It is only through these three pillars – affordability, quality, and accessibility – that we, as a society, reap the maximum amount of benefits – benefits for children’s development, for families’ quality of life, and for workers’ rights.
“This is a once-in-a-generation chance to make a massive difference in the lives of so many of Alberta’s citizens. We need to work together to ensure that this agreement is a step towards a universal system of child care that truly works for everyone.”
Public Interest Alberta spearheaded a campaign for $10-a-day child care since July 2021.