Behind the Numbers

Entries Tagged as 'Child Care'

We’re paying for $7/day child care, so why is only one province getting it?

April 15th, 2015 · · Child Care, Income Inequality

Many Canadians don’t know that Quebec has the least expensive childcare in the country at $7/day (well actually $7.30 now). Meanwhile in Toronto parents pay $49/day, and in Vancouver it’s $41 a day for toddlers/preschoolers.

It’s no surprise that $7/day childcare is wildly popular in Quebec. It’s far cheaper than the national average, and allows for more parents, and far more women to enter (or re-enter) the workforce. It also creates more spaces in regulated centres.

In Canada, there are a million families with working parents who have young children. However, there are only half a million regulated child care spaces, leaving parents with long wait times and an increased reliance on the unregulated sector.

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Alberta has nation’s largest gender gap and it’s growing

March 6th, 2015 · · Alberta, Child Care, Economy & Economic Indicators, Gender Equality, Poverty and Income Inequality

In 1995, Canada made historic commitments to implement gender equality in all policies, programs, and laws when it adopted the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action. That same year saw the adoption in Canada of The Federal Plan for Gender Equality to secure gender equality in all aspects of social, political, legal, and economic life in Canada.

A new Parkland Institute report demonstrates that women in Alberta, who were early leaders in moving toward greater sex equality, had already begun losing ground relative to men for some years by the time these commitments were made in the mid-1990s.

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Dear 99%: Universal child care? No thanks; we’re good. Sincerely, the 1%

October 23rd, 2014 · · Child Care, Poverty and Income Inequality, Satire

Some time ago, a white-collar professional acquaintance of mine was temporarily laid off. She was concerned—maybe a bit embarrassed—but not too worried; she had good connections and an impressive CV. She even had some savings. But they certainly wouldn’t last long: she still needed an income.

I asked her if she had applied for EI yet, and she looked at me, shocked.

“I’d never go on EI—that’s for people who really need it,” she told me. “I’ve taken out a line of credit to tide me over.”

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$15 child care: Canada’s hottest new political pledge?

October 15th, 2014 · · Alberta, Child Care, Gender Equality, Income Inequality, Maritime Provinces, Poverty and Income Inequality, public services, Quebec, Taxes and Tax Cuts

As Canada’s Twitter elite (economists, pundits, partisans) broke out into a virtual policy brawl over yesterday’s NDP national affordable child care pledge, I couldn’t help but think the party might have hit a political sweet spot.

Of course there were the typical Twitter arguments between Liberals and New Democrats that break out every time one of them makes a political pledge.

But another line of argumentation unfolded on my Twitter news feed – one designed to exploit class tensions. The argument advanced by a few well-off Twitterati asserts that universally accessible, affordable programs, like child care, aren’t progressive because rich people can afford to pay for these services themselves.

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Where are all the women (candidates)?

September 12th, 2014 · · Child Care, Cities, Gender Equality

Licia Ronzulli voting with her 1 month old daughter

Licia Ronzulli voting with her 1 month old daughter on September 22, 2010. by European Parliament/Pietro Naj-Oleari

A number of cities across Canada are gearing up for municipal elections. As the field of candidates becomes clear it is also becoming obvious that there is a serious gap in the numbers of men and women running for office. It seemed like a good time to ask: why don’t more women run for office?

Here’s why.

1. Work. Life.

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Where is the economic action for women in the North?

August 29th, 2014 · · Child Care, Employment and Labour, Gender Equality

Umimmak School in Nunavut

By Timkal (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

The Prime Minister is wrapping up his ninth annual trip to Canada’s north this week. This year, like every year, the stealth ski-doo is loaded up with announcements.

Presents for everyone!

So what are women in Nunavut going to find in their stockings this year? The bulk of federal investments in economic development in the north are funnelled through the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency, which has an annual budget of just over $50 million (although that number is projected to decline over the next few years). Much of that $50 million is currently directed towards resource development—training for folks to work in the resource sector, infrastructure to get to the resources, research to tell us where the resources are.

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Is it time for a Canadian “daddy month”?

July 31st, 2014 · · Child Care, Employment and Labour, Gender Equality, Quebec

What makes for happy families? It turns out parents and policy makers could learn a lesson or two from their kids.

Lesson one: share.daddy_mouth

OK, I’ll admit it, there is one thing you can’t share—those nine awesome months of heartburn and swollen ankles. But the day your bundle of joy arrives, the sharing benefits start. In 2006 Quebec implemented a new paternity leave program to help fathers share more of the benefits and (yes, also the dirty diaper, and the middle of the night headaches) with mothers. Result? More fathers take time out after their kids are born in Quebec than in the rest of Canada. A lot more. Three times more.

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We’re Splitsville on Income Splitting…Now What?

February 14th, 2014 · · Alternative Federal Budget, Child Care, Satire, Taxes and Tax Cuts, Uncategorized

Well, that was awkward.

Oh, sorry—I’m not talking about how the federal government, in a remarkable display of self-satire, cut short debate on the Fair Elections Act (or as I like to call it: “Democracy 2.0: Abridged too far”).

And, tempting as it is, I’m not hinting at the recent PBO analysis that demonstrates, directly contradicting the Treasury Board’s 18 days estimate, how sick leave in the Federal public service is virtually identical to the 11 days per year that private sector workers take.

Nor am I referring to the Federal Budget’s youth internship programs that, at best, address the needs of 1% of unemployed youth.

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Leaving Children Out in the Cold

August 23rd, 2013 · · Child Care, Economy & Economic Indicators, Uncategorized

child knittingApparently people get all subjective when they talk about children. Thank goodness we have economists. Not those crazy “social welfare” people who are “lobbying the state for more resources for families with children.” Real economists. With real facts. Economists like Christopher Sarlo, from the Fraser Institute, who published a real report (The Cost of Raising Children) on the real cost of raising children in Canada.

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Stealth Ski-Doos and the Price of Milk: What does the Arctic want?

August 20th, 2013 · · Aboriginal Issues, Child Care, Economy & Economic Indicators, Environment, Gender Equality

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERARemember that uncle who gave you a remote control car for Christmas and then played with it himself all day? Not that you wanted a remote control car. But still, who was that present for anyway?

Well, Prime Minister Harper is up north again and he’s got a wicked stealth snowmobile and a big bag of priorities for Canada’s Arctic. Top of the list: Arctic sovereignty and economic development. On his first stop of the tour this year Harper lauded the “hardy, industrious people from all over the world, who, digging for gold, ended up digging the foundations for an increasingly powerful northern economy.” To that gold-digging end, the Prime Minister’s visit to the Arctic has included the announcement of all kinds of new goodies for the north – training (to work in extractive industries), jobs (in extractive industries), roads to resources (in extractive industries).

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