The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) has released the fifth in a series of reports that rank the most and least expensive cities for child care in Canada. Development Milestones: Child care fees in Canada’s big cities 2018 shows that child care fee have risen faster than inflation in 61% of cities since 2017, with Toronto continuing to be the most expensive.
However, in 2018, the number of provinces with policies directly targeting fee affordability has doubled and the impacts of those new provincial affordability policies offer lessons for decision makers. For example, St. John’s saw a 13% drop in median preschool fees as almost half of its centres are taking part in its new set-fee system.
“Parent fees for licensed child care continue to be impossibly high for most families but the report shows that they can be lowered when governments take deliberate steps to do so,” explained Morna Ballantyne, Executive Director of Child Care Now, “it is crucial, always, that governments enhance quality and access while also making child care affordable for all parents and this requires more direct government funding of programs and proper planning; what we need is a funded child care system not the patchwork approach of today.”