NDP continues call for more affordable, regulated child care spaces

EDMONTON – NDP Leader Rachel Notley said Alberta needs a strong, publicly funded and publicly delivered child-care system that is prohibited from discriminating against kids and their families based on age or disability.

A survey released today by Public Interest Alberta shows that the majority of daycares that responded have waiting lists, sometimes growing to 300 families.

It also shows that even when childcare is accessible, it’s often unaffordable.The data reveals 82% of childcare centres feel that the provincial government’s funding is insufficient.

“The average Alberta family in Alberta is paying more than $1000 per month per child for child care. That is enough to deter many parents from returning to the workforce. Not only is it an unfair choice for moms and dads to have to make. It’s also hurting Alberta’s economy,” said Notley.

A TD Bank research survey suggests that for every dollar invested in early childhood education, the benefits to provincial and federal governments range from $1.49 to $2.78 through increased tax revenues and decreased social spending.

“This government has promised an end to child poverty, increase workforce participation and put the needs of Alberta families first. A properly funded childcare program is an absolutely necessary first step to keeping all of these promises and it’s long overdue,” said Notley.

The Alberta NDP supports the Federal NDP’s call for a national childcare program. The program is committed to a $15/day cap on childcare cost and the creation of one million new childcare spaces over the next 8 years.