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Child care wage increase 'an insult' [CA-YT]

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Author: 
Keevil, Genesee
Publication Date: 
27 Aug 2007
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EXCERPTS

On May 24th, the Yukon government offered childcare operators more money for wages.

"The release promised immediate funding," said Yukon Child Care Association president Cyndi Desharnais on Friday. "But we never got it."

Three months later, the Yukon Party issued a second release.

On Thursday, Health and Social Services Minister Brad Cathers announced funding for childcare staff wages will "increase immediately by 30 per cent."

It's a repeat of the May 24th press release, said Desharnais.

"This is not a new release -- it's looking like it is, but it isn't. It's the same money."

Since May, Desharnais had been phoning Cathers asking for the money.

...

A few days later, Desharnais got a cheque.

But it's not enough.

"I broke it down over the weekend," she said on Monday. "And it's absolutely terrible."

Early childhood educators will be getting a raise of less than 10 cents an hour, said Desharnais.

"It's an insult. I'm almost embarrassed to give it to my staff."

...

The wage increase "will assist childcare operators with their staffing costs and assist in the recruitment and retention of childcare workers," wrote Cathers in the release.

Desharnais and Wasson disagree.

...

Calling it a 30 per cent increase is deceptive, added Desharnais.

Staff will not see a 30 per cent wage increase.

The increase is not actually 30 per cent of the direct operating grant, she said.It is only 30 per cent of the portion of that grant that deals with staff wages.

The rate paid to childcare operators for staff wages, will increase by 30 per cent, according to the release.

The increase will be retroactive to April 1.

...

Cathers refused comment.

- reprinted from the Yukon News

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Entered Date: 
31 Aug 2007
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