Commercial Takeover of Early Learning and Child Care:
It's Time for Public Child Care Campaign Launched
(TORONTO) - A new company, 123 Busy Beavers, linked to ABC Learning Centres; the world’s largest child care corporation seeks to start-up in Ontario. In Australia, ABC Learning Centres have taken over child care services leading to problems with quality and increased parent fees.
The McGunity Government has spent millions of dollars on the Province’s Best Start Program, which emphasizes that parental involvement and community control are vital for planning services based on the needs of children and families.
123 Busy Beavers will put profit before the needs of communities, children and child care staff. The Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care has called for an immediate moratorium on child care licenses to new commercial operators to keep 123 Busy Beavers out of Ontario.
In a new legal opinion released today, leading lawyer Steven Shrybman, finds that a moratorium is both “practical and lawful” and gives the Ontario Government an opportunity to decide crucial policy questions including whether companies traded on the stock exchange should be licensed to provide child care services.
“The biggest cost for child care centres is wages. Any company looking to make money will pay less to the staff. The other way to make money to increase fees to parents. We want high quality and affordable child care for every child in Ontario” said Andrea Calver, Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care. “
The NDP has bills in the House of Commons and at Queen's Park that would direct future licenses to public/not-for-profit child care providers and keep 123 Busy Beavers out of Ontario. We call on the McGuinty Government to support Bill 26 and declare that Ontario's children are not for sale.
It's Time for Public Child Care is a public education campaign of community including community meetings in 10 Ontario cities.