Government of New Brunswick

 

Fredericton - The New Brunswick Women’s Council applauds the signing of a bilateral agreement between the federal and provincial governments to provide $71 million in funding for early learning and child care in New Brunswick over the next three years. This funding will support the transformation of 300 current child care facilities into early learning centres and the introduction of a lower fee policy for New Brunswick families.

“The early learning and child care sector is predominantly led and staffed by women and is essential to enabling women’s participation in the workforce,” said council co-chair Jewell Mitchell. “We are pleased to see the government show leadership and support an increase in accessible, affordable and high-quality child care in New Brunswick.”

In addition to the development of early learning centres and a lower fee policy for families, the funding announced will be used to provide more spaces for infants and toddlers, implement an inclusion policy for children with diverse needs, facilitate professional learning opportunities for educators and support Acadian and francophone communities through the development of guidelines for language acquisition and cultural identity.

“While we are encouraged by  this funding, there are questions that still need to be addressed, including whether or not this approach will move early learning and childcare away from a market-based model toward a system that is treated as critical social infrastructure,” said council co-chair Jody Dallaire. “Also, as the majority of those working in the child care sector are women, we are eager to hear whether this funding will improve wages and benefits for those who do this important work.”

The New Brunswick Women’s Council is an independent advisory body on women’s equality issues.

09-05-17

Media contact: Beth Lyons, Executive Director, New Brunswick Women’s Council, 506-462-5142, beth.lyons@gnb.ca