Letter to the Toronto Star Editor in response to: “Daycare spaces or $100 cheques?”

“Pay parents for their work” Toronto Star, Sep 23, 2008, pg. AA.7

Re: Editorial, Sept. 20 titled “Daycare spaces or $100 cheques?”

This editorial asks the wrong question. The question is When will all children and parents in Canada be treated equitably by any party?

I am a low-income, single mother of two. I’ve been doing a few hours of paid “self-employed” work a week since a few days after a C-section. I do unpaid child care work 24/7/365 (almost). I am “entitled” to the maximum daycare fee subsidy, but will never use a daycare system. I don’t want to.

Punishing parents for looking after their own children is idiotic, yet it is the policy of all federal parties.

The writer ignores the fact that the Conservatives have provided more than $2 billion a year to the provinces to spend on daycare if they like by extending agreements and increasing that funding.

How about full equality for women as mothers, and for all children? Finance child rearing by funding parents directly for this work on a par with all other socially essential work. Then parents can cover the opportunity costs of reducing their paid work, and/or pay someone else a fair wage for doing it.

Helen Ward, Burnaby, B.C.