While parent fees are high, many Registered Early Childhood Educators are putting off starting their own families or leaving the field because wages in the sector are too low.
This Mother’s Day weekend, parents and Registered Early Childhood Educators (RECEs) are holding a Stroller Brigade at Toronto City Hall on May 13th 2017 from 10 am – 12 pm to call for an early years and child care system that provides professional pay and decent work, supported by the Association of Early Childhood Educators Ontario (AECEO) and the Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care (OCBCC).
With the Ontario government’s recent promise to create 100,000 child care spaces over five years, parents and educators are expecting Kathleen Wynne to deliver big things for child care. But with 24% of RECEs and 67% of other staff working in licensed child care making $15/hour or less, decent work can’t wait five years or until the next election.
Educators and parents are sending a message to Premier Kathleen Wynne that RECEs and early years staff are valuable partners who support communities.
“As a parent with a son in child care, I see the vital work that educators do every day. They deserve professional pay and decent work now.” said Toronto mother Munizah Salman.
With the government’s proposed expansion of child care spaces comes the promise of 20,000 new jobs in child care. But to attract and retain the best educators and staff the Ontario government must ensure a child care system with professional pay and decent work.
“I know that too many educators can’t afford to stay working in a profession that they love. As an ECE student looking to the future, I want to contribute my professional skills and knowledge, but it’s only fair to expect decent wages and working conditions.” said Sophia Mohamed, a George Brown College Early Childhood Leadership student.
“RECEs are the key to quality child care, so it is critical that the workforce is considered when funding and planning to build new quality child care spaces. Child care is more than places and spaces – it’s time to value every educator.” said Lyndsay Macdonald, Coordinator of the Association of Early Childhood Educators Ontario.
Stroller Brigade route:
- 10 am – meet in front of Hester How playground (West side of City Hall)
- March West on Queen St W to University Ave
- March North on University Ave to Dundas St W
- March East on Dundas St W and finish at Dundas Square
Carolyn Ferns, Public Policy and Government Relations Coordinator, OCBCC