Before I ever had a child I knew about the challenges Canadian parents face (especially the single parents – 1.5 million Canadians according to the newly released 2011 census numbers).
Once I became a parent, I realized just how lucky I was. I got a year of leave, topped up so I was making my salary while I was off. We were very, very lucky to find a wonderful childcare provider. I had a very understanding boss who let me take my daughter in to work with me when it was either that or lose time at work. (When my husband was travelling and I started work at 7 but daycare didn’t open until 8).
Still, even with a great daycare provider, one of my two monthly paycheques was going straight to that, and her 8-4 hours caused some difficulties for us. If we decided to have a second child there would be no point in me working at all. And I’m already thinking about how high university tuition might be when my daughter is ready to go.
This government, of course, is focussed on the “economy.” They also believe that $100 a month is enough to cover child-related costs. Yeah, thanks.
Now an expert has said that Canada’s dwindling birth rate – presumably caused at least in part by the cost of having a child – could be a risk to Canada’s economy.
To maintain its economy, David Foot says that Canada must have a birth rate of at least 2.2 children per family. Right now it stands at 1.7.
Foot told the Canadian Press “…if you don’t have an extensive child-care program to support women raising their children, you’ll watch your fertility rate continue to decline.”
Will the Prime Minister listen? Likely not.