Press Release - Early Learning and Child Care: Ontario Can't Work Without It!

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - March 5, 2009) - The Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care has sent a bumper sticker to every Cabinet Minister reading, "Child Care - Ontario Can't Work Without It!"

"This is one of the most important budgets in many years for early learning and child care programs. As many as 22,000 child care subsidies are at risk without a serious commitment from this provincial government. In addition, we will see a longer and deeper recession without significant investments in affordable child care so that parents are able to work or retrain," said Jenny Robinson, Executive Director, Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care (OCBCC).

The Coalition is calling on the McGuinty Government to invest $600 million over two years which would:

- Save 22,000 child care subsidies that are threatened by expired federal funds

- Create 7,500 new affordable child care spaces and create 1,500 new jobs for Early Childhood Educators and other staff

- Meet pay equity commitments for child care staff, raising average wages by 12%

Quality child care reduces poverty, creates jobs, enables parents to work or go to school and returns up to $7 in future costs for every dollar invested today.

Ontario's projected $18 billion dollar deficit is all the more reason to invest in child care to fix our ailing economy. Child care is part of the solution; quality child care services are a recession- proofing tool that will positively impact the economy now and in the future.

We call on the Cabinet to ensure child care is a central part of Ontario's 2009 budget.

The Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care (OCBCC) represents the voices of over 500 members including organizations, agencies, child care centres, and individuals across the province advocating for universally-accessible, high-quality, non-profit regulated child care in Ontario.