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This article was published 18/4/2019 (757 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
Parents in Point Douglas know that access to affordable child care is essential.
Most parents in Point Douglas need to work to provide for their kids and having access to reliable childcare allows them to do so. Daycares are also beneficial to a child’s social and intellectual development.
Unfortunately, licensed not-for-profit child care programs in Manitoba have had their funding levels frozen for the past three years despite the cost of living rising annually. In order for quality child care in the province to continue, the government needs to make investments in childcare, but unfortunately funding has been frozen for the last three years.
We need to support children in the province. It’s not fair to underfund supports for children.
The government needs to prioritize children and the needs of their parents, which is why the Manitoba Child Care Association recently collected 26,000 signatures on a petition urging the government to increase funding for licensed not for profit child care programs and recognize the importance of early childhood learning in Manitoba.
All 26,000 signatures were collected over a period of only four weeks. The fact that we were able to collect so many signatures in so little time is evidence of how deeply the problem is affecting children, parents, and all Manitobans.
In their most recent budget, the provincial government also cut supports for special needs kids in the classroom by $1.8 million, which means that there will be fewer educational assistants to support children who need individualized attention. Fewer resources translates to fewer improvements in learning outcomes.
This government has made it clear time and time again that their priority is to balance the budget, however doing so at the expense of children is unacceptable.
I understand the importance of accessible, affordable and quality child care for all parents in Point Douglas. In light of the incredible work child care centres are doing despite the challenges outlined above, I want to uplift the early learning and child care programs that exist in Point Douglas, including Eagle Wing Early Education Centre, Splash Child Care, Makoonsag Intergenerational Children’s Centre, and Keep Childcare Inc.
Thank you to all child care workers who help ensure a bright and promising future for our children here in Manitoba.
I want to know what your experience has been accessing childcare, so please reach out to my office at 204-414-1477 or email me at Bernadette.Smith@yourmanitoba.ca to share.
Bernadette Smith is the NDP MLA for Point Douglas.