B.C. families demand affordable public childcare in stroller rally | National Union of Public and General Employees

B.C. families demand affordable public childcare in stroller rally

"Social attitudes about early childhood education and educators have been tied to outdated and gendered notions about women's work for decades. This devalues the profession--reflected in low wages and recruitment and retention problems."

Vancouver (12 March 2013) – A large, energetic group of B.C. families, their children and early childhood educators gathered at Jericho Park in Vancouver this morning in support of affordable public childcare.

The event, organized by labour and community organizations, included a short and spirited rally, followed by families, childcare workers and union officers leading a stroller parade to Christy Clark’s nearby constituency office.

Stephanie Smith, Treasurer of the B.C. Government and Service Employees' Union (BCGEU/NUPGE) said that the current system fails to adequately value the role of professional early childhood educators. "Social attitudes about early childhood education and educators have been tied to outdated and gendered notions about women's work for decades. This devalues the profession--reflected in low wages and recruitment and retention problems."

Susan Harney, chairperson of the Coalition of Child Care Advocates of B.C. explained her organization’s plan, which is heavily endorsed by parents, grandparents, labour, community, business, municipalities and school boards. “Similar to the $7 a day childcare plan that already exists in Quebec, the B.C. plan calls on government to commit to a childcare system with fees for families capped at $10 per day. Families making less than $40,000 a year would pay no user fee. This Plan is good for children, women and the B.C. economy. ”

Messages left at Premier Clark’s constituency office were from mothers and fathers, children, and early childhood educators asking the premier to stand behind her “Families First” commitment.

The event was organized by the B.C. Federation of Labour (BCFED) and its affiliates, B.C. Government and Service Employees’ Union (BCGEU/NUPGE), Canadian Union of Public Employees of BC (CUPE BC) and the Coalition of Child Care Advocates of BC (CCCABC).

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The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) is one of Canada's largest labour organizations with over 340,000 members. Our mission is to improve the lives of working families and to build a stronger Canada by ensuring our common wealth is used for the common good. NUPGE

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