Childcare editorial got facts wrong

Prince George Citizen

Opinion: Emily Mlieczko, Executive director – Early Childhood Educators of B.C.

As I read this article (Take care of your own kids, editorial June 19) and comments online, it saddens me to think that this is the response when we look to systems that would support children and families in our communities.

Whether we are in strong relationships or living as single parents, we are all families, come from families and we all belong community.

Canada’s investment in early care and learning services is the lowest in well-developed countries in the world according to the OECD.

First Call B.C.’s poverty report card indicates that British Columbia has some of the highest numbers of children living in poverty across our country.

The $10/day child care system, proposed by the Coalition of Child Care Advocates and the Early Childhood Educators of B.C. would support families from all economic backgrounds and give them the ability to afford the right to access these necessary services as stated by the United Nations.

Early childhood educators do not see themselves as strangers. They are caring and educated professionals who have a deep understanding of child development. They don’t take away family’s responsibilities, but instead support them.

As a young mother I didn’t want to work so I could have a second car, or a trailer, a huge TV or to buy booze and cigarettes.

I worked because I wanted to provide my children the necessities of life, food, shelter and medical services such as braces for my son.

Associate editor Mick Kearns’ references Quebec’s $7/day child care program and how much it costs, but he might be interested in a 2011 report by Dr. Pierre Fortin, economics professor at the University of Quebec, which contradicts Kearns’ statement.

Fortin’s report states “After 12 years, the Quebec scheme more than pays for itself through mothers’ annual income and consumption taxes.”

For every dollar Quebec invests in child care, it recoups $1.05 and Ottawa receives $0.44.

The province’s investment in quality child-care programs more than pays for itself.

I feel saddened that women are still made to feel guilty for wanting and enjoying opportunities to be in the workforce, to provide for their families and to be an active participant in their communities while enjoying their role as a parent.

I would gladly have my tax dollars go towards a system that supports families, and other necessary programs.