OTTAWA, APRIL 21, 2011 – Establishing a national child care system makes financial sense says the Canadian Federation of University Women. Research conducted for the Child Care Human Resources Sector Council has shown that child care grows the economy: every dollar invested in high quality child care programs increase the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by $2.30 which outshines the stimuli generated by the construction and manufacturing sectors. A national system creates jobs: investing $1 million in the child care sector generates almost 40 jobs- four times the number of jobs generated by spending $1 million in construction activity. A public system pays for itself: more than 90% of the cost of hiring child care workers returns to governments as increased revenue and the federal government would gain the most. Over the long term, every public dollar invested in quality child care programs returns $2.54 in benefits to society.
A national program would reduce families’ child care costs so that they have funds to meet other pressing needs. Paying for child care is frequently the second highest cost of raising children, next to housing.
There are additional indirect financial benefits resulting from the introduction of a national publicly funded child care structure. Such a regulated system will provide the foundations for healthy childhood development and strengthen the base for lifelong learning. Moreover, it will enhance the ability of women to be able to participate in the work force or go to school to improve their situation. More than 70% of mothers with children ages 0 -5 are in the paid labour force. There are regulated child care spaces for only about 20% of these children. Many working mothers without access to regulated care or a close relative must fall back on unregulated arrangements of unknown quality and safety.
“The next federal government must connect the dots and realize that a national child care plan makes sound economic sense for Canada” said Brenda Wallace, National President of CFUW.
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