Dear Prime Minister:
On behalf of Canada’s child care sector, the Canadian Child Care Federation (CCCF) congratulates you on your second mandate as Prime Minister of Canada.
As Canada’s largest national child care organization, representing early learning and child care professionals from across Canada, including the CCCF’s affiliate child care organizations, we look forward to continuing our collaboration with your government and the Minister of Families, Children and Social Development. The important work of building a high quality, pan-Canadian child care system, as committed to in your election platform, is essential and critical for Canada’s children, families and Canada’s Early Learning and Child Care (ELCC) workforce.
Your government has taken historic strides on child care including establishing the Indigenous Early Learning and Child Care Framework, creating bilateral agreements with the provinces and territories, funding for innovation projects and the establishment of the Expert Panel on Early Learning and Child Care Data and Research.
The CCCF welcomes your commitment to create a national secretariat with the goal of setting the groundwork for a pan-Canadian child care system. We further commend your government for recognizing that Canada’s ELCC workforce—over 253,000 of them of which 249,000 women—requires support. However, moving forward on your campaign commitment, much more is needed than tuition support in order to fully strengthen Canada’s ELCC workforce. A well educated, trained and compensated ELCC is the cornerstone to quality child care.
Building on the current bilateral agreements with the provinces and territories along with the infrastructure spending in the child care sector, the path forward must now be to deliver on the promise of creating a national child care secretariat to build this long overdue national child care system for Canada.
We further ask that you work across party lines, knowing that Canadians supported your party, the NDP and the Greens, all of which support affordable, accessible and quality ELCC.
Personally, I was honoured to be named as a member of your government’s Expert Panel on Early Learning and Child Care, to provide expertise and knowledge garnered from my time as an Early Childhood Educator, service provider and child care advocate. I know first-hand the meaningful difference that quality child care makes for families, communities, and the lives of children.
But just as importantly, I understand why the people who provide the education and care for our children—those compassionate professional child care providers—are essential for a progressive policy plan. The CCCF is focused on collaborating with your government and child care stakeholders to carve out a child care workforce strategy—an integral piece to a quality framework.
The CCCF and our partners from across Canada are ready to continue offering our expertise to support you in delivering your promises and more to further our efforts in developing the long-overdue pan-Canadian child care system. Like you, we mean business and are ready to roll up our sleeves to get this done—not in a few years or down the road, but right away.
Indeed, if your government truly wants to address deep structural inequalities and income insecurity in Canada, remove gender pay gaps and help families and the middle-class, you will need to build a robust child care system. Our children deserve no less.