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Distance makes the daycare dash a drag

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Day Three in the Toronto Star's series "The Child Care Challenge", Part 2
Monsebraaten, Laurie
Publication Date: 
19 Feb 2011



Every day is a child care challenge for King City mother Emma Willer, who works at Queen's Park and relies on GO Transit and the TTC to get to daycare on time.

The daily daycare dash to pick up her two sons, ages 3 and 5, once turned into a five-hour odyssey for her several years ago.

Willer's husband, Mark, who usually handles daycare drop-off, was away on business. She had just dropped off Callum and Oliver, parked at the GO lot and boarded the southbound train to Toronto when the daycare called her cellphone to say Callum was running a fever.

But by this time it was 8:30 a.m. and she was already hurtling towards the city with no stop until Union Station.

Since GO is a commuter service, the next train to King City didn't leave until 11 a.m. So Willer took the subway to work and waited.

"It wasn't an emergency and I knew he was in good hands at the daycare," she says.

Unfortunately, Willer didn't realize she was relying on an old GO Transit schedule. So when she arrived at Union Station for the 11 a.m. train, she discovered she had just missed it.


She finally arrived at the daycare at 1:45 p.m. - five hours after she got the call.

"It was just so frustrating and it made me realize I never wanted to be in that situation again," she says.

Now when Mark travels, Willer takes the family car to work, just in case.


- reprinted from the Toronto Star