Excerpted from press release
The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, and the Premier of Ontario, Doug Ford, today announced an agreement that will deliver affordable, inclusive, and high-quality child care for families in Ontario.
This Canada-Ontario early learning and child care agreement is a five-year deal to reduce child care fees in the short term, deliver $10-a-day child care for Ontario families, and create 86,000 new licensed early learning and child care spaces in the province.
The agreement will reduce licensed child care fees for children under six years old on average by 25 per cent as of April 1, 2022, saving Ontario families an average of about $2,200 per child. By the end of the year, fees will be further lowered, and families will see a total reduction of 50 per cent on average, saving them an average of about $6,000 per child per year. This agreement will deliver on average $10-a-day child care for Ontario families by the end of March 2026.
With the signing of this agreement, the Government of Canada has signed agreements with every province and territory to deliver on its promise to build a Canada-wide affordable, inclusive, and high-quality early learning and child care system. Our plan is already making life more affordable for families, creating new jobs, getting parents back into the workforce, and growing the middle class while giving every child a real and fair chance at success. More than half of Canada’s provinces and territories have already seen reductions in child care fees and, by the end of 2022, average fees for regulated early learning and child care spaces will be cut in half across the country.
This agreement will improve access to early learning and child care programs and services and grow a strong and skilled workforce of early childhood educators, including through better wages and greater opportunities for professional development. It will also support a child care system that is inclusive of vulnerable children and children from diverse populations, including children with disabilities and children needing enhanced or individual supports.
In addition, the agreement includes a clear commitment to begin discussions with Indigenous partners on developing a collaborative plan that supports Indigenous children’s access to affordable, high-quality, and culturally appropriate early learning and child care.
Building a child care system that works for Canadians in every region of the country is a key part of our plan to make life more affordable for families while creating good jobs and growing the economy. Through these signed agreements, the Government of Canada aims to create 250,000 new child care spaces across the country by March 2026 to give families affordable child care options, no matter where they live.