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June 17th, 2021

NDP table bill to establish universal childcare in Canada

OTTAWA – Yesterday, the NDP’s Critic for Women and Gender Equality, Lindsay Mathyssen (London-Fanshawe), tabled her private members’ bill which would establish the core principles of a universal childcare program.

“Liberals have promised an affordable, universal childcare program for 28 years without action and women have been disproportionally impacted by their delay - taking on much of the care work,” said Mathyssen. “Children who needed affordable child care when they were young now need it for their own children.”

There is an affordability crisis in child care across the country. Families are struggling to find child care spaces and get on waitlists – before their children are even born. Costs are unaffordable in many cities. And parents, especially mothers, are forced to make impossible choices between delaying their return to work or paying huge amounts for the child care they need.

Budget 2021 made several promises in finally moving forward with establishing a childcare program however there is still a lack of critical details. To date, the Liberals have made no efforts to introduce any legislation. It is crucial that women are included in Canada’s economic recovery. Without affordable childcare options, it will be impossible for many mothers and caregivers to rejoin the workforce. If the Liberals are serious about establishing a universal childcare program, they should support this bill.

“This program must be based on, accountability; quality; universality; and accessibility and should establish the standards needed to meet these principles,” added Mathyssen. “I am calling on the government to work with us in moving childcare forward – it is too important not to get right.”

Canadians should not have to keep waiting for the Liberals to get them the help they need. New Democrats know there’s more to do and we’ll keep fighting to make sure more people get more help faster.