Government needs a childcare plan, not another tax credit


The B.C. Liberal government’s much touted “Early Years Strategy” amounts to… a tax break worth $55 a month.

The new refundable tax credit for children under the age of six will start on April 1, 2015, the government has confirmed.

Let’s see: a 55 dollar tax rebate will pay for … almost exactly one day of child care, since childcare now costs an average of $9,000 a year in BC, and $14,000 in Vancouver.

Basically, a second mortgage.

So what about the 21 other working days, when young families remain squeezed between unaffordable housing and unaffordable childcare?

BC needs a childcare plan, not a tax break.

Lack of proper childcare is hurting the provincial economy.

BC mothers have the lowest labour participation rate in Canada because childcare is so expensive, it’s not worth going back to work.

BC businesses lose $600 million a year in lost productivity due to work-life conflicts linked to lack of childcare.

And to folks who say: “raise your own kids,” remember that childcare is not about delegating the raising of our children to someone else.

Childcare is about a community of care – one that allows families to be financially stable, keeps skilled and educated workers in the workforce and nurtures our future leaders.

BC needs a childcare plan, not a tax break. Anything else is short sighted.

The government should take another look at the $10/day childcare plan.

Darryl Walker’s blog