Reducing licensed child care fees for British Columbia families by 50%
December 2, 2022 Richmond, British Columbia Employment and Social Development Canada
For too long, families have faced high monthly child care fees, long waitlists and too few high-quality child care options. That is why the Government of Canada is supporting the implementation of a Canada-wide early learning and child care system, giving children the best possible start and making life more affordable for families across Canada.
Today, the Prime Minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau, and the Premier of British Columbia, David Eby, were joined by federal Minister of Families, Children and Social Development, Karina Gould, and British Columbia’s Minister of State for Child Care, Katrina Chen, to announce that licensed child care fees for families with children 5 and under in British Columbia have been reduced by an average of 50% across the province.
Effective December 1, parents across British Columbia can now save on average up to $550 more per month for each child they have in licensed child care, representing an additional up to $6,600 in annual savings. This is on top of the existing savings of up to $350 per month per child introduced with the ChildCareBC plan in 2018, for a total of almost $900 of savings per month on average.
Additionally, since the inception of the Canada-wide agreement, British Columbia has converted 10,500 child care spaces into its $10-a-day program; this will increase to a total of 12,500 by early 2023. With the December fee reductions and the new spaces converted to the $10-a-day program so far this year, the governments of Canada and British Columbia will have achieved their shared goal to reduce licensed child care fees for children 5 and under in the province by an average of 50% by the end of this year.
Over the course of the Canada-British Columbia Canada-wide Early Learning and Child Care Agreement – 2021 to 2026, British Columbia has committed to working toward a province-wide average of $10-a-day child care for children aged 0 to 5. Building a Canada-wide early learning and child care system that works for families in every region of the country is a key part of the Government of Canada’s plan to make life more affordable for families, while creating good jobs and growing the economy.
“As of yesterday, we cut child care fees in half on average across British Columbia—saving families up to an additional $550 a month per child! Our plan to make life more affordable is delivering concrete results for parents who are struggling with the rising cost of living, and ensuring every child can get the best possible start in life. We’re going to continue to be there for people as we work toward delivering $10-a-day child care across the country and build an economy that works for all Canadians.”
– The Right Honourable Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada
“We are seeing real progress in making our national early learning and child care system a reality. Today’s announcement is a key step toward making licensed child care more affordable for families in British Columbia. We will continue to work toward a better future for children, and families, across Canada.”
– Karina Gould, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development
“At a time when global inflation is driving up the cost of so many essentials, child care fees are going down in B.C. That’s because we chose to invest in children and families. Expanding access to high-quality, affordable child care opens up access to opportunity—and is key to making sure we have the skilled workforce we need to keep our communities running.”
– David Eby, Premier of British Columbia
“We know families in B.C. are struggling with the cost of living, and a lot of parents are worried about making ends meet heading into the holiday season. With parents in B.C. now saving as much as $900 per month on their child care fees, we know that British Columbians are feeling the benefit of our government’s efforts to make life more affordable. This is bringing us another step closer to $10-a-day child care for all families that need or want it, and helping families get ahead.”
– Katrina Chen, Minister of State for Child Care of British Columbia
As part of Budget 2021, the Government of Canada made a transformative investment of over $27 billion over five years to build a Canada-wide early learning and child care system with provinces and territories. Combined with other investments, including in Indigenous early learning and child care, up to $30 billion over five years will be provided in support of early learning and child care.
As part of the Canada-wide agreement with British Columbia, the Government of Canada is investing $3.2 billion over five years to help improve licensed early learning and child care for children aged 0 to 5 in the province.
Since the launch of the ChildCareBC program in 2018, British Columbia has funded the creation of 30,500 new licensed child care spaces, using a blend of federal and provincial funding. Under the Canada-wide agreement, British Columbia has committed to creating an additional 30,000 spaces by March 2026, and a total of 40,000 by March 2028.
All of Canada’s provinces and territories have already seen reductions in child care fees. By the end of 2022, average fees for regulated early learning and child care spaces will be cut in half across the country. The goal is for all families in Canada to have access to regulated early learning and child care for an average cost of $10-a-day by March 2026.
On November 17, 2022, Nunavut announced that, as of December 2022, it will become the first jurisdiction to achieve $10-a-day regulated child care under a Canada-wide system. Quebec and Yukon had both achieved $10-a-day, or less, through their existing early learning and child care systems before the Canada-wide agreements were established.
For media enquiries, please contact:
Office of the Minister of Families, Children and Social Development, Karina Gould
Ministry of Education and Child Care
Media Relations Office
Employment and Social Development Canada
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