March 25th, 2020
Honourable Heather Stefanson
Minister of Families
Room 357, 450 Broadway
Winnipeg, MB, R3C 0V8
Dear Minister Stefanson,
I understand the government's response to the COVID-19 pandemic is changing daily as new developments occur and that you are actively relying on the advice of the Chief Public Health Officer. Since the government's directives to reduce services for early learning and child care providers, I have been contacted with any questions and concerns from both the public and home-based childcare providers due to the lack of information and assistance provided.
The information provided last week urged child care centres to reimburse or credit fees during the closure. This has placed some centres in the difficult position of not being able to reimburse sees as the only other alternative would be insolvency for the centre.
Because of this, I am urging you to immediately increase grants to all home and centre based child care facilities to cover the cost of parent fees while childcare services are suspended. With this commitment all centres and child care facilities could continue to pay early childhood educators and families would no be burdened by this cost during this difficult financial period.
These are difficult times for families and early learning child care providers. We need to ensure that parents can afford quality childcare while ensuring our early childhood educators and other childcare workers are supported.
Thank you for your immediate attention to this matter.
NDP Childcare Critic