children playing

Daycares in B.C. are no longer allowed to charge waitlist fees

Printer-friendly versionSend by emailPDF version
Some child care providers were charging families up to $200 to hold a place, province says
Dickson, Courtney
Publication Date: 
2 Apr 2024


Licensed child-care providers in British Columbia can no longer charge families a fee to be on their waitlists as of April 1. 

The province says the fees have been eliminated to reduce the overall costs associated with child care, as part of funding guidelines released by the B.C. government in December that will take effect over the coming year.


The province says some providers were charging non-refundable fees between $25 and $200 to hold a spot on their waitlists.


Child care advocates say charging parents to be put on a waitlist for hard-to-come-by spaces for their children is a cash grab.

"This has been a long time coming," Sharon Gregson, with the Coalition of Child Care Advocates of B.C., told CBC News in December, when the change was first announced.

Last week, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced a $69.9 million investment in child-care spaces in B.C. during a visit to Surrey. The province said 930 new $10-a-day spaces will be added this spring, bringing the total to about 15,000. 

The provincial government says it aims to have 20,000 spaces in the next two years. But families say they need child care now.