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More affordable child care = more productive parents at work: Surrey Board of Trade taking its plan to other business groups

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Burritt, Dan
Publication Date: 
4 Apr 2012



The Surrey Board of Trade is shopping around a new deal for families that would see affordable childcare and, hopefully, less stressed-out and more productive parents.

CEO Anita Huberman explains their Business and Families Position Paper asks the provincial and federal governments to re-jig the childcare subsidy system. "So that parents pay no more than $10 a day full-time and $7 a day part-time, making it free for families less than $40,000 a year."

The argument is happier, less-stressed out parents will take less time off work, be more productive, boost the economy and save their employers money, while children will benefit from quality childcare.

Huberman says the Board is also asking its 1,800 business members to be more family-friendly. "We're trying to feature businesses that include features such as family responsibility leave, a culture that supports work-life balance, alternative work arrangements."

She says they estimate a more affordable childcare system would cost $2-billion in the first year in BC but would drop later on.

"Education costs are reduced, crime costs are reduced, additional taxes will be generated for government, thus trying to give them more money," Huberman adds. "It will set in motion concrete strategies to sustain medical care expenditures because a new deal will produce a healthier generation of young children who will, in turn, become a healthier population."

Huberman adds the Board plans to pitch its plan to various groups over the next few months.

"We are going to be going out to speak to other boards of trades and chambers [of commerce]...we are going to take this forward to our Canadian Chamber of Commerce, which is our mother chamber in Ottawa, to hopefully get the support of all of the chambers and boards of trades in Canada at our conference in September."

-reprinted from News1130