Posted on Jul 23, 2020
UCP ANNOUNCES FEWER CHILDCARE SPACES, HIGHER COSTS FOR PARENTS, NO PROVINCIAL FUNDING AND LESS FEDERAL FUNDING
EDMONTON - Alberta families will pay more to fight for fewer child care spaces in Alberta under the funding and policy announcements today from Minister Rebecca Schulz.
Schulz announced a new funding agreement with the federal government that provides less support for Alberta child care spaces than a previous agreement signed by the NDP government, and no provincial dollars.
“Rebecca Schulz is failing Alberta families,” said Rakhi Pancholi, NDP Opposition Critic for Children’s Services. “She announced no new provincial money, less federal money than Alberta received before, and she is moving away from universally accessible child care, which means families will see their out-of-pocket childcare costs increase at a time when they can least afford it.”
During the NDP government, a pilot program provided more than 35,000 families with subsidies and access to $25/day child care. In one year, the NDP government created more than 6,000 new child care spaces in Alberta.
The UCP announcement today will leave thousands of families paying more by removing their subsidy and access to $25/day childcare, and will add only 385 spaces to a system that is already struggling as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“This isn’t investment, it’s abandonment of Alberta families at the worst possible time,” continued Pancholi. “For the minister to say that 23,000 families - some of whom used to pay nothing - will now pay $13/day and call that a win, is absurd.”
The NDP renews their call for investment in child care as the single most valuable investment the Government can make to support economic recovery. Today’s UCP announcement today signals to Albertans that their government has no intention of taking any bold or meaningful actions in this sector.