The Federal Government plays a minimal role in child care in Canada: regulated, unregulated, private or public.
Many households today require women to take on jobs. Because women are also, typically, the primary caregivers for children, families with children who need both parents to work need daycare. Quality, affordable, licensed daycare.
What is the government’s role in establishing and funding these necessary daycare spots?
“Since 2001, the federal government has transferred funding to the provinces and territories to allow them to support early childhood programs and services, first through the Early Childhood Development initiative and more recently through a 2003 federal/provincial/ territorial funding arrangement known as the Multilateral Framework on Early Learning and Child Care.” – http://www.lop.parl.gc.ca/Content/LOP/ResearchPublications/prb0418-e.htm
In other words, the Federal government has passed on this responsibility to the provinces.
Cost is a huge factor with regards to child care. Without subsidized spaces, daycare becomes a barrier for many low and middle income families.
Public funding for childcare does not require that the daycare centers be run by the government, simply that the daycare needs to be funded using tax dollars.
The Federal government, currently, has a limited role in childcare. It is my opinion that we need a National Childcare Program that addresses differences in pricing and regulations.