Nova Scotia reduces child care fees early while Ontario lags

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A women holds a young baby while working at a computer.

The Nova Scotia government announced Friday that it will reduce day care fees for parents ahead of schedule while Ontario leaves parents waiting. Parents in Nova Scotia will pay on average 25% less by April 2022 and 50% less by the end of the year, while the Ontario government has yet to even sign on to the federal child care plan.

“It’s impressive that Nova Scotia is taking a more aggressive and committed step toward implementing the federal child care program, but we remain frustrated in Ontario that families are being neglected while also clearly being used as a political bargaining chip,” said Naureen Rizvi, Ontario Regional Director. “Child care is far from affordable in Ontario, so there’s little patience to wait any longer. Premier Ford must sign now!”

Unifor has long advocated for affordable child care and improved wages and working conditions for child care workers. The federal child care program aims to provide $10-a-day care across Canada by 2026. Every province and territory except Ontario and Nunavut have adopted the program.

“Women dominate in five essential worker categories: cashiering, catering, cleaning, clerical, and care - like health care and child care. The pandemic has demonstrated just how vital these frontline professions are to all our daily lives,” said Lisa Kelly, Women’s Department Director. “Affordable child care ends up paying for itself in terms of workforce participation and productivity. There is simply no reason for Ontario to delay any further in signing on to the federal program.”

Add your voice today and sign this petition to tell your local MPP, Premier Doug Ford and Ontario Education Minister Stephen Lecce that Ontario needs universal child care.