(Vancouver, BC: Unceded Coast Salish Territories) This week the Centre for Family Equity submitted letters to 12 provincial government stakeholders, including the Office of the Premier, proposing nine key recommendations for the Province regarding the development of BC's $10 a Day ChildCareBC system. The evidence-based recommendations are a result of the Centre's recent research and report, A Whole Life: The Impact of $10 a Day Child Care on the Health and Socioeconomic Well-being of Low-Income Lone Mothers in BC. A letter and the report was sent to the following: Ministry of Social Development and Poverty Reduction. Ministry of Education and Child Care, Minister of State for Child Care, Ministry of Mental Health and Addiction, Ministry of Health, Ministry of Children and Social Development, Office of the Premier, and to the Parliamentary Secretary for Gender Equity, Opposition Critic for Children, Family Development, and Child Care, the leaders of the Green Party of BC and BC United.
Recommendations include turning existing centres into $10-a-day ChildCareBC centres to reach a goal of 50,000 $10-a-day universal spaces as soon as possible and addressing a range of issues including the need for child care hours to accommodate shift workers and the need for a wage grid for workers.
CFE's data points to a positive correlation between access to $10-a-Day Child CareBC spaces and improved health, well-being, and economic outcomes for low-income, lone mothers in BC. Participants praised the high quality of childcare at $10-a-day centers, emphasizing its positive impact on their children's development and the overall health of their families. $10-a-day child care is touted by the CFE as a key strategy to signifigantly reduce and address high rates of poverty and labour market exclusion among lone mother-led families in BC.
Despite the BC government's commitment to a $10-a-day child care system, progress has been slower than anticipated and growth has stalled in several key areas eroding the benefit of the policy. The existing network of spaces is deemed inequitable, inaccessible, and incomplete for many lone-parent families.
The Centre for Family Equity has updated it's organization recommendations to reflect the findings of the report as well.
The CFE research team, including peer researchers, remains available for discussions with government representatives.