This submission prepared by the Coalition of Child Care Advocates of BC is for the British Columbia Budget 2009. CCCABC provides rationale for why investment in child care and early learning should be a top priority.
In addition to making the case that:
The early years matter;
BC families need child care;
Investing in child care makes good economic sense; and,
Other jurisdictions do it &em; so can BC.
Two new arguments make the need to invest in child care more compelling.
BC child care is now in crisis.
-As a result of federal cuts and failed policies, parent fees have increased; waiting lists grew and wages for early childhood educators dropped. 85 % of British Columbians see the lack of affordable child care as a serious issue.
From the 2008 BC's Throne Speech; the idea of expanding full school day kindergarten and early learning programs for 3-5 year olds.
-If this reflects a new provincial commitment to universal, publicly funded and democratically controlled services for young children &emdash; the Coalition of Child Care Advocates of BC (CCCABC) views it as a victory for those who advocate on behalf of young children and working families.
-Dollars need to go into programs that integrate care and learning rather than into programs that continue to divide BC's early learning and child care services. This is the only way to meet the developmental needs of young children and the needs of working families.