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WINNIPEG – Yesterdays announcement by Tim Sale, Minister of Family Services and Housing, that the Manitoba government is committed to developing a universal child care program is good news for all Manitobans says CUPE.

Our members worked with the Child Care Coalition to get thousands of signatures of support for a publicly-delivered, affordable universal child care program, CUPE Manitoba President Paul Moist said. We know first-hand just how much this means to Manitobas children and families and we salute the Doer government for taking the first step on the road to child care reform.

Moist said at the unions annual convention in Winnipeg 12 days ago, CUPE National President Judy Darcy handed Premier Gary Doer a copy of CUPEs child care submission to the province and urged the NDP government to regain its leadership role.

It isnt going to happen without you, Darcy said. Two other provinces Quebec and BC have already committed to implement universal, low-cost, publicly-delivered child care systems. In the 80s, Manitoba took the lead on child care and Darcy urged the province to move ahead and not wait for the federal Liberals who have failed to deliver a national program.

Early childhood educator Lori Schroen, President of Local 1543 which represents workers at eight Winnipeg child care facilities, works with the provinces Child Care Coalition and sits on CUPE nationals child care working group.

Workers and families have been waiting a long time to see child care reform, Schroen said. We congratulate Minister Sale and we join the Coalition in urging the government to act now on the new vision which has so much public support.

The Canadian Union of Public Employees is Canadas largest union representing more than a half-million women and men across the country. In Manitoba, CUPE represents 24,000 members in health care, education, municipalities, social services, child cares, utilities, libraries and emergency services.

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For more information, contact:
Paul Moist, CUPE Manitoba President,
Cell: (204) 981-2873
Maureen Morrison, CUPE Equality Representative,
Phone: (204) 942-0343 ex. 208