Proposed Changes Would Mean More Affordable Child Care and Early Years Programs

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The Ontario government is working for the people by proposing legislative amendments that, if passed, would make it easier for home-based child care providers and authorized recreational and skill-building programs to serve more children.
“We listened to parents and families, and we committed to making life easier by helping them find more affordable child care and early years options,” said Lisa Thompson, Minster of Education. “These proposed changes would provide more families with the child care support that they want and need.”
The proposed amendments to the Child Care and Early Years Act, 2014 (CCEYA) and the Education Act are part of the government’s recently introduced Restoring Ontario’s Competitiveness Act. They would help increase access to child care and early years programs while maintaining high standards and aligning age-eligibility rules with kindergarten and camps. They would also remove some restrictions on home-based child care, making affordable child care more available.
The proposed changes include:
Increasing the number of young children that home-based child care providers can have in their care, from two under two-years-old, to three under two-years-old
Lowering the age at which home-based child care providers must count their own children towards the maximum allowable number of children in care, from six-years-old to four-years-old
Reducing the age requirement from six-years-old to four-years-old for authorized recreation programs that serve children after school
Removing the restriction that a parent must receive financial assistance before licensed in-home child care services can be provided for their child.
“These changes will give parents freedom to choose child care options that work best for them, in locations close to where they live and work,” added Thompson. “It will give families more options while keeping their children safe by maintaining the same provincial health and safety provisions and progressive approach to enforcement.”

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QUOTES
“The recently introduced Restoring Ontario’s Competitiveness Act brings relief and support to both parents and home child care providers. Parents have been struggling to find spaces for their infants, and caregivers have been struggling to maintain a viable business. This is a win/win for parents and caregivers. Child Care Providers Resource Network applauds the government for listening to families, for whom home child care is often a first choice.”
— Brenda Burns, President of Child Care Providers Resource Network
“We are excited this government has given us the ability to provide the flexibility to support young people with the right service to meet the unique needs and interests of families. This will benefit all communities and rural areas.”
— Owen Charters, President and CEO, Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada