When Canadians voted in a Liberal minority federal government on September 21, 2021, child care advocates across the country breathed a sigh of relief that the eight previously signed Early Learning and Child Care funding agreements will be honoured and that federal funds budgeted in 2021 to build a Canada-wide system of child care will remain in place.
Since the Alberta government has yet to negotiate a funding agreement, child care advocates in that province carried on their child care campaign moving from a federal to a local focus. At the time of the federal election, Alberta was in the middle of province-wide municipal election campaigns to elect mayors, new city councils and both separate and public school board trustees.
Child Care Now Alberta reached out to candidates asking that they publicly pledge support for a system of child care for Alberta and ask Alberta Premier Jason Kenney to accept the federal government’s offer of one billion dollars in federal funding. As a result of these efforts, child care was made a municipal issue. In a CBC interview after the vote, Calgary mayor-elect Jyoti Gondik said that more affordable child care is critical to Alberta’s economic recovery and that if the provincial government refuses to reach an agreement with the federal government she would be please to negotiate a deal municipally and will be discussing the possibility with other mayors.
Child Care Now Alberta also continues to collect signatures on a petition urging Premier Jason Kenney and Minister Rebecca Schulz to sign an agreement.
Allied organizations, like AECEA, are engaging their members with events like: AECEA Connect Webinar: What Does $10/day Child Care Mean for Educators?