July 11th, 2019

Doug Ford's cuts put 3,000 Toronto child care spaces in jeopardy

QUEEN’S PARK – Official Opposition NDP Leader Andrea Horwath says the impacts from Doug Ford's budget just keep coming. Horwath and the Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care revealed Thursday that Ford’s decision to slash child care operating funds puts over 3,000 Toronto child care spaces on the chopping block.

“51 planned child care projects and over 3,000 spaces in Toronto are now at risk, because of Doug Ford’s cuts,” said Horwath. “These projects were approved by the province — but the Ford government decided it has different priorities, and slashed the critical operating funding these projects need to go ahead."

Horwath noted that without the promised support of the province, which had been budgeted and accounted for, the City of Toronto and the Toronto District School Board would be forced to find the money by August – and if they don’t, these desperately needed spaces will not be built.

Ontario is already Canada’s most expensive province for child care, with Toronto parents paying a median cost of $1,685 a month, or $20,220 a year – the highest costs in the country.

"For families in this city, and across Ontario, the stress of finding and affording a child care space is so high," said Carolyn Ferns, policy coordinator at the Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care. "Parents describe it as a scramble, a struggle and a maze. That is exactly why these 3,000 child care spaces in Toronto and others around the province are so needed, and why is it shameful that the Ford government is creating this kind of chaos for Ontario’s families and for our communities."

Ford's child care cuts impact communities throughout the province.

“Yesterday, we also learned that Mr. Ford’s child care cuts will cost Sudbury $1.3 million,” added Horwath. “When Doug Ford cuts child care, every parent in every community faces a harder time finding care, or higher costs, or both.
“Families deserve so much more from their government. The NDP will keep fighting for affordable, public and not-for-profit child care."