Thursday, February 09, 2017
Ontario Continuing to Provide Support for Child Care Professionals
Wage Enhancement Will Strengthen Licensed Child Care, Encourage Sector Growth
For a third straight year, Ontario is increasing wages to help keep child care professionals in licensed child care settings and encourage growth in the sector, ensuring that children and families across the province continue to benefit from safe, high-quality child care that promotes early learning and development.
As part of Ontario's commitment to supporting child care professionals, the program will receive ongoing, annual funding. This year, the province will provide:
- An ongoing wage enhancement, up to $2 per hour plus benefits, for eligible child care workers and home visitors in the licensed child care sector.
- An ongoing enhancement, up to $20 per day, for eligible home child care providers.
- A raise in the maximum hourly wage to be eligible for the wage enhancement - an increase of 1.5 per cent to $26.68 per hour. For home child care providers, the daily fees maximum will be $266.80 per day.
The wage enhancement program helps to retain the best possible child care professionals. It also closes the wage gap between registered early childhood educators working in schools and licensed child care.
As of September 1, 2016, Ontario banned child care providers from charging parents a fee to be placed on a waiting list. The province is also creating an additional 100,000 new, licensed child care spaces for infants, toddlers and preschoolers over five years, which will double the current capacity for 0 - 4-year-olds in licensed child care.
Strengthening the early years and child care system is part of our plan to create jobs, grow our economy and help people in their everyday lives.
- In 2015, Ontario committed $269 million over three years to support the wage increase
- Since 2013, child care funding has increased by 14 per cent to more than $ 1 billion annually.
- Since 2012-13, the number of licensed child care spaces in Ontario has grown to nearly 389,286 – an increase of 32 per cent.
"We value the hard work and dedication of child care professionals and staff across Ontario. They provide parents with peace of mind, knowing that their kids receive the support and encouragement needed to thrive and reach their full potential. This funding will help keep these valued caregivers in the licensed child care sector and close the wage gap. As part of our commitment to create 100,000 new licensed child care spaces, Ontario will need 20,000 new Early Childhood Educators to help give our children the best possible start in life."
— Indira Naidoo-Harris, Minister Responsible for Early Years and Child Care