Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care

Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care

March 06, 2012 09:48 ET

Without funding in the Provincial budget, hundreds of child care centres will close

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - March 6, 2012) - Parents are concerned that community-based, not-for-profit child care centres providing high quality child care may close, victims of provincial underfunding as well as poor planning and implementation of full-day kindergarten.

The Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care launched a new website to alert parents and communities of child care centres at-risk of closure or facing impacts to their programs. The website, www.childcarenow.ca was launched with profiles of centres in Ottawa, Peterborough, Toronto, London and the town of Mount Brydges. Profiles of child care centres will continue to be added to the site to show the real impact of underfunding on child care programs all across the province.

"Many of our programs have long waiting lists, particularly for infant care. It is time to stand up and not accept anything less than quality, accessible early learning and care programs today - right now - because tomorrow is too late" said Shelia Olan-MacLean, from Kawartha Child Care Services.

The early learning and child care sector has joined together this year to sound the alarm on the crisis for Ontario's child care system. There is widespread consensus from child care providers and advocates of the steps that are needed to prevent a wave of closures of child care programs:

  • Immediate funding of $287 million to stabilize child care centres

  • Funding adjusted for inflation each year

  • Develop a new funding model including affordable fees for parents and decent wages for staff

  • Immediately stop the licensing of new for-profit child care operations

Pete Treadwell, father of a one-year old son, commented that parents are frustrated because "we need affordable child care. Many young families need two incomes to pay our expenses. We care about quality and want our children in a great learning environment. We are telling all parents to send a message to your MPP at www.childcarematterstome.ca."

NDP MPP and Education Critic Peter Tabuns spoke about the importance of child care to parents. "Every week I talk to parents who are trying to find good, affordable childcare. Parents who need to go back to work and find long waiting lists for childcare are under huge pressure. We must hold the McGuinty government to account, pressing them urgently for leadership, and for transition funding to stabilize the childcare sector", said Tabuns.

Contact Information

    Andrea Calver

    Sheila Olan-MacLean