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Ottawa wants daycare fees cut in half. Will B.C. reach that target?


New Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives report tracks if child-care charges are assembly federal targets to drop by half by the top of 2022

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Last July, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau shook palms with Premier John Horgan to have fun a deal that promised to lower daycare charges in half by the top of this yr and to make all regulated child-care centres $10 a day by the top of 2025.

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A brand new report by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA), to be launched Tuesday, analyzes how a lot additional daycare charges within the non-$10 centres must drop by the top of the yr to succeed in these federal 50-per-cent discount targets.

And the quick reply is: Quite so much.

“The fees in the B.C. cities of Vancouver, Burnaby, and Surrey are closely clustered. Infant fees will need to fall by between $620 and $645 a month to reach their federal target (by the end of 2022), with Richmond, B.C., requiring a larger reduction in infant fees, at $850 a month,” says the brand new report.

Prices additionally must be slashed by a hefty quantity for toddler and preschool spots. For instance, of the 37 Canadian cities analyzed within the report, Richmond’s daycares had the second-highest median charges, behind Toronto, and subsequently had probably the most to chop to succeed in these end-of-year targets.

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“Richmond experienced a large increase in its median fee, apparently driven by the presence of several expensive new for-profit centres in the past year,” the CCPA evaluation says.

In an interview, CCPA senior economist David Macdonald stated B.C.’s plan to hit the 50-per-cent goal discount has two components.

The first is to develop its $10-a-day websites from the present 6,500 areas to 12,500 spots by the top of 2022.

The second is to spice up the cash the federal government offers to daycares to offset the prices mother and father pay every month. Right now, the NDP supplies as much as $350 a month for toddler and toddler spots, and as much as $100 for preschool spots to scale back charges for households.

The authorities has not, nonetheless, introduced publicly how these charges will enhance by the top of 2022. And till these particulars are launched, it’s unimaginable for the CCPA to investigate whether or not B.C. will meet the federal targets, Macdonald stated.

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“While some of the mechanisms in B.C.’s plan are known … several of the critical values are not available right now,” says the report, which was capable of get the knowledge it wanted to make these projections for the opposite 9 provinces and two of the three territories.

The ministry of schooling and little one care stated in an e-mail Monday that it was nonetheless engaged on the monetary mannequin and can reveal its new price discount quantities within the fall. However, it maintained B.C. will meet the federal authorities’s requirement of slashing the median 2019 daycare charges in half by the top of this yr.

“B.C. is committed and on track to reaching the target,” the e-mail stated.

The CCPA report supplies an estimate of by how a lot the federal government’s price discount quantities should climb so as to attain Ottawa’s 50-per-cent discount targets.

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In Richmond, the place the median 2021 preschool charges had been $1,275, the federal government subsidy must rise by practically $800, to nearly $900 a month, to succeed in the federal promise to chop charges in half, Macdonald stated.

In Vancouver, Surrey and Burnaby, the present $100 price discount for preschoolers must develop by between $538 and $465 a month to succeed in the federal objectives.

And even when all these targets are met, Richmond’s charges for three- to five-year-olds will nonetheless be excessive in comparison with the remainder of Canada.

“Following the planned reduction in 2022, Calgary is projected to tie Toronto with the highest preschool-age fees, at $700 a month. The Greater Toronto Area suburbs and Richmond, B.C., will follow close behind, in the $600 a month range,” the report says.

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“Canada is finally on its way to achieving universal, affordable child care; how quickly and how well this can be achieved for all families Canada-wide will be determined by how each jurisdiction goes about meeting its federal targets.”

The new report is entitled “Game Changer,” as a result of the CCPA says the federal Liberals’ 2021 promise to work with provinces, territories and Indigenous organizations to scale back daycare charges was a watershed second for fogeys struggling to pay excessive month-to-month costs. Ottawa pledged $27 billion over 5 years for this system.

Premier John Horgan’s NDP has made inexpensive little one care a most important centrepiece of its authorities. Critics, although, complained that February’s provincial finances didn’t comprise the funding wanted to succeed in these objectives, and as a substitute relied closely on federal cash.

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lculbert@postmedia.com


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