Child care doesn’t cost, it pays. Over the past 10 years 200,000 new jobs were created in the child care sector. Add to that another 100,000 jobs in industries that support and supply the sector, and you understand how child care pays more than it costs.

These are the direct economic benefits to the economy from implementing a Canada-wide child care system — the sort envisioned in this year’s speech from the throne — over ten years.

This is the word from a new study by noted economist Jim Stanford, Director of the Centre for Future Work. For women, in particular, access to high-quality early learning child care is crucial to their ability to seek and sustain paid work. As many families know universal, accessible, quality child care is the key to unlocking women’s economic power.

COVID hit women and women’s employment first and hardest. The pandemic has exposed the fragility of the existing patchwork of child care services and underlines the compelling need to target economic reconstruction initiatives to address women and the needs of those most vulnerable.

The study, released this morning says a Canada-wide child care program would create greater equality, boost regional and rural economic development and bring long term health and well-being benefits for future generations.

CUPE represents 12,000 child care workers. Learn more about the study here.