On behalf of 37,000 CUPE members across Manitoba, we thank all early childhood educators (ECEs), providers, and child care staff who are on the front lines serving our community.
The COVID-19 pandemic has shone a greater public light on the incredible value our child care workers provide to the community, a value that has been under-recognized for decades, and as a result, early childhood educators and staff have historically been underpaid. There are also thousands of unorganized child care workers across the country who have little job security and very few benefits.
“We should be looked at as professionals and not just one week out of the year, but always,” says Peggy Robichaud, who sits on CUPE’s National Child Care Working Group and is the President of CUPE Local 1543 at Knox Day Nursery Inc. in Winnipeg. “Child care has always been essential, not just in times of crisis. So, I want to wish all the ECE’s, Child Care Assistants (CCAs), and support staff to have a great ECE Week in spite of all the chaos that is going on, and know that you are valued 365 days of the year.”
This Week of the Early Childhood Educator, CUPE hopes all Manitobans will take note of the tireless work of our child care workers across the province, and take a moment to thank the child care workers in your community.
We also hope the provincial government and child care organizations recognize the importance of fully funded, public, and accessible child care for all Manitobans and will invest in creating more public child care spaces to fill critical gaps in the care for our children.
The Manitoba government has been slowly introducing more private, for-profit child care into Manitoba, a move that could undermine the quality and accessibility of child care to many families. CUPE Manitoba has been advocating to protect public, non-profit, accessible child care and has already raised red flags over the province’s direction.
We also continue our call to the federal government for a national, universal, quality, publicly funded child care plan across Canada.
Today is an important day to recognize the work of child care workers across Manitoba, and to be steadfast in our commitment to fight for child care staff across the province, today and into the future.
CUPE represents approximately 12,000 child care workers across Canada.
Learn more about CUPE’s child care sector and our advocacy for child care workers nation-wide.
To our child care heroes, thank you!
Learn more about the Week of the ECE at the Manitoba Child Care Association.