(Halifax) - CUPE Nova Scotia President Danny Cavanagh says today’s announcement of $5 million in additional funding for child care is welcome news because the sector has been so starved for funding, but it also raises a number of questions.
Says Cavanagh, “For starters, this continues the practice of giving public money to private operators. They have announced 400 new subsidized spaces, but those spaces are still portable which means they can be used in for-profit as well as not-for-profit centres.
“While they have simplified the grants for child care providers, there is still no guarantee the money will actually be spent on wages for early childhood educators,” he says.
“We have had bad experiences with employers who are using that grant money for things other than salaries,” explains Cavanagh.
“We applaud them for eliminating the Assessed Daily Parent Fee. But imagine how much more money working parents would have to spend if we had full early learning in a ‘pre-primary’ setting.
“Think about how many more spaces would be available for infant and toddler care if 4&5 year olds were part of the public education system,” he adds.
“While we welcome the new funding because it’s long overdue, we will be assessing it further and raising any concerns we have directly with the minister. It remains our belief that we need a public early learning and child care system which is universally accessible and affordable for working families,” says Cavanagh.
CUPE N.S. President
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