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Yes, it’s a classic boondoggle but surely an $8 billion expenditure deserves some evidence

April 6, 2015 by Martha Friendly

Probably shouldn't say "we told you so" but last Tuesday a Parliamentary Budget Office report confirmed what many have said since 2006: the UCCB cheque through the mail slot isn't child care. The PBO's analysis showed that more than half the "child care benefit" money (most of which is the Universal "Child Care" Benefit) will go to families who don't spend anything on child care. Moreover, the PBO calculated that these expenditures would reach $8 billion a year by 2017.

One more year without a national child care program

February 6, 2015 by Martha Friendly

By Martha Friendly, Carolyn Ferns and Lyndsay Macdonald

Last February 6, we posted a blog commemorating the eight year mark since the Harper government's cancellation of Canada's first national child care program. This year, while the story is still the same, there are some new and hopeful developments. With this in mind, we are reposting last February 6's commemorative blog together with comments about how the child care debate is shaping up in 2015.

Data crimes and misdemeanors: Why childcare, too, needs the long-form census

February 2, 2015 by Martha Friendly

In the first week of February 2015, the House of Commons will vote on Kingston MP Ted Hsu's private member's bill calling for restoration of Canada's long-form census. Although research methods and data analysis are not ordinarily popular or newsworthy topics, there has been considerable media and public attention to the details of how Canada has turned its data clock back to the year 1956, or 1871, or 1666, depending on how you look at it.

Are we there yet? Post-turkey reflections on childcare in 2015

January 21, 2015 by Martha Friendly

By Martha Friendly and Monica Lysack

After the overstuffed turkey dinners, eggnog and latkes, the holidays are a perfect time to reflect on the past year before gearing up for the new one. This year, with a federal election looming and ChildCare 2020, Canada's first childcare policy conference in ten years just behind us, the holiday was an opportunity for heavy-duty musings about childcare in 2015. 

Double whammy: Why we’re crowd funding for childcare data

September 10, 2014 by Martha Friendly

Taking Care of Child Care Data logo

It's probably not surprising that childcare data was one of the first casualties of the data crimes and misdemeanors that have swamped Canada's stock of valuable information used by social groups, business analysts and policy makers to understand critical issues.

Child care’s rough ride

May 8, 2014 by Martha Friendly

Child care now!

Child care in Ontario has been having a rough ride for some years. Most recently, the current election call illustrates the precariousness of child care in the absence of a federal role and without solid, well-developed provincial policy. In Ontario and Canada-wide, the state of child care is dismal in just about every way - spaces unavailable, quality uneven, wildly varied but mostly unaffordable parent fees, low staff wages, weak regulation.

Another February 6: One more year and whaddya get? (Not more and better child care)

February 6, 2014 by Martha Friendly

Photo of ministers signing the MB bilateral agreement

By Martha Friendly & Carolyn Ferns

Another February 6th, and for those of us in the child care community, it's a time to reflect on Canada's close-but-no-cigar national child care program. You remember, right?

Buyer beware: What parents navigating Canada's child care market need to know

September 30, 2013 by Martha Friendly

Graphic for Finding quality child care / Trouver des services de garde de qualit

The last year or two has seen a flood of media stories about unregulated (or unlicensed) child care situations with no public oversight in which children have died, were injured, or put at risk. We've read about:

Look in the mirror: Just substitute "Canadian" for "American child care hell"

April 24, 2013 by Martha Friendly

An article in the April 29th issue of The New Republic has generated considerable interest in US child care as its content and perspective have been picked up and extended in social media, other magazines, US TV, radio and daily newspapers and even in offshore news media.

Think child care is no longer a women’s issue?

March 6, 2013 by Martha Friendly

Image of Rosie the riveter with a baby in her arms

On this International Women's Day,  think again....

Here are ten indications that Canada's lack of action on universal child care continues to have a profound impact on women in all regions of Canada-- across the life span, across diverse groups and across the economic spectrum:

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