Child care and COVID-19 in Canada

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Overview and outline

The COVID19 pandemic has been a fact of life in Canada since mid-March 2020, profoundly impacting child care provision along with just about every aspect of life for Canadians. The Childcare Resource and Research Unit (CRRU) has developed a comprehensive information source on child care and COVID-19 in Canada. 

Most of the following menu items are updated regularly and arranged by province/territory where appropriate.

These topics are separate ISSUE files:

These items are available within this issue file:

Reports from a national survey of child care providers

The purpose of this survey, conducted in May 2020, was to learn about the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on early learning and child care provision, finances, and concerns for the future.

CRRU calls for support for Canadian families and the child care sector

Please note: The plan below is now outdated. As child care sectors across Canda move into the recovery phase of the COVID-19 pandemic, see Child Care Now's - Strategy for recovery: Making affordable child care for ALL a reality which includes a recommendation for a two-phase approach by the federal government in the aftermath of COVID-19. 

March 2020 - We at Childcare Resource and Research Unit, together with other child care researchers and organizations are calling on Canadian governments to collaborate to support families, children, the child care workforce, and child care service providers with the aim of:

  1. Closing all licensed child care for regular (non-essential parent-workers) use until social distancing is no longer necessary;
  2. Ensuring the availability of free age-appropriate child care services for children 0-12 years during the closure period for those parents required to work in essential services (grocery employees, postal workers, corrections facilities, emergency services, child care providers, nurses, doctors, etc.).  These services will make use of existing licensed child care to ensure the necessary infrastructure is available and incorporate all possible protocols and measures to ensure maximum health and safety of children, educators, parents and the community;
  3.  Continuing to pay all child care staff (educators, cooks, directors, supervisors, providers) as if they were still working;
  4. Ensuring parent fees are suspended during closures;
  5. Maintaining all government funding to service providers during closures and provide additional funding to compensate for the loss of income from parent fees and/or parent subsidies.

Note that this has been updated from a previous version following community input.

Tue, 09/15/2020