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City employees, fed up with the struggle to find care for their children during night and weekend shifts, presented a 5,000-signature petition to City Council demanding a 24-hour daycare service.
About 75 firefighters, police, blue- and white-collar workers and bus drivers staged a brief but noisy protest outside city hall, before three spokespeople made their request heard at the meeting's question period.
"I've gone through 14 different babysitters because of my working hours," blue-collar worker Joanne Poulin said.
"Because I work a lot of evening, night, and overtime shifts, I kept losing my babysitters and none of the daycares in the city are adapted to those kinds of atypical working hours," she said.
Poulin said the city took steps toward creating a daycare service for its employees at the 2002 Montreal Summit. But the project was never carried out.
"It's almost impossible to find someone to care for our children when we work nights and weekends," said Constable Marie-Josee Blais, representing the Police Brotherhood. "We have no help from the city, no help from the government."
- reprinted from the Montreal Gazette