81% of parents who use child care say that the cost puts a financial strain on their family
Child care is the second-highest cost in the Metro Vancouver living wage calculation after housing. In the Fraser Valley living wage calculation, child care outpaces housing as the number-one expense. For many low-wage families, quality and affordable child care is just not something that they are able to afford. Many have no option but to leave the workforce or to use unregulated care.
The $10aDay plan would reduce the Metro Vancouver living wage by $3.90 per hour. Child care is a significant cost for families.
The median wage for early childhood educators is 19% lower than that of BC workers. Most child care workers are not earning a living wage.
What would a solution look like?
The $10aDay campaign has proposed a solution that works for all families including the families of child care workers. The plan:
- Would cap parent fees at $10 per day for full-time, $7 per day for part-time, and no user fee for families with an annual income of less than $40,000
- Pay a living wage for child care workers
- Include all children of all abilities, including those with extra support needs
- Provide play-based programs that are consistent with the BC Early Learning Framework or Aboriginal frameworks
Can we afford it?
- Quebec’s child care system returns $1.05 to its government for every $1 invested – and Ottawa recovers 44 cents, even with no direct investment. The returns continue to grow.
- Phasing a universal child care plan in over 10 years would allow for families to see immediate relief from high fees while allowing the government to scale up the plan (and costs) in stages.
- Once the plan is fully phased in, it would generate an estimated $1.3 billion in revenues to the provincial and federal governments. This would be from the boost in economic activity from parents who are able to return to work once lower fees and increased child care spaces allow them to enter the workforce.