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Better child care for more families on Prince Edward Island

CANADA, August 21 - Delivering $10-a-day child care for families right across the country is a key part of making life more affordable while creating good jobs and growing our economy by helping parents rejoin the workforce. The Government of Canada’s plan has already cut child care fees in half for families on Prince Edward Island (PEI) to an average of $20-a-day. As we keep making progress toward $10-a-day child care on the Island, we are investing to improve child care and make it more accessible for more families.

The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, was joined today by the Premier of Prince Edward Island, Dennis King, as well as Minister of Families, Children and Social Development, Jenna Sudds, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Lawrence MacAulay, and PEI’s Minister of Education and Early Years, Natalie Jameson, to announce investments to create more spaces and support early childhood educators on PEI.

Over the next 18 months, PEI will create more than 300 new licensed child care spaces in the province’s Early Years Centres. This expansion means the province is now expected to create at least 530 spaces by March 31, 2026.

Early childhood educators are the cornerstone of our early learning and child care system. PEI will use federal funding to support wage increases for early childhood educators in Early Years Centres starting on October 1, 2023. Wage increases are key to the recruitment and retention of a qualified workforce and the further expansion of child care services in the province. PEI will also invest $1.18 million annually to develop, implement, and manage a defined-contribution pension plan for employees of Early Years Centres, which will help the early learning and child care sector retain qualified, experienced employees and boost recruitment efforts.

In addition to building a Canada-wide early learning and child care system, we are delivering support through key programs like the Canada Child Benefit, which provides families up to $7,437 per child under the age of six and $6,275 per child aged six through 17 this year. The Government of Canada is working to make life more affordable for families, while also creating good jobs and growing the economy.

Quotes

“Investing in workers delivers results. That’s the story we see play out again and again across the country. As we make progress toward delivering $10-a-day child care for families on Prince Edward Island, we’re also improving the system and making it more accessible. That’s how we make life more affordable, create good, middle-class jobs, grow the economy, and give every child the best possible start in life.”

The Rt. Hon. Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada

“Working together, we continue to make important investments to build a strong, resilient and accessible early learning and child care system on Prince Edward Island. These investments will help introduce over 300 new child care spaces over the next 18 months, increase wages for early learning educators, and provide those working in the sector with a defined contribution pension plan to help attract and retain workers at designated centres across the province. The investments made today, will help build a better tomorrow, for all Islanders.”

The Hon. Dennis King, Premier of Prince Edward Island

“Today’s announcement will improve compensation and benefits for early learning and child care workers across PEI, and will greatly expand the availability of child care on the Island. In making these announcements, PEI has once again demonstrated that hard work and strong collaboration between our levels of government will bring benefits to families and children in the province, and across Canada. I congratulate Minister Jameson and her team on these significant achievements.”

The Hon. Jenna Sudds, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development

“This financial investment demonstrates our collective commitment to supporting early childhood staff and acknowledging the pivotal role they play in shaping the future generations of our society. By offering financial security and peace of mind, we aim to attract and retain talented individuals in this vital profession, further enhancing the quality of the early learning and child care system in our province. The new expansion grant will provide more high-quality, inclusive and affordable early learning and child care spaces for Island families.”

The Hon. Natalie Jameson, Prince Edward Island’s Minister of Education and Early Years

Quick Facts

  • Wage increases in designated Early Years Centres on PEI will be effective as of October 1, 2023, and will range from $0.50 - $1.75 per hour based upon certification levels and experience.
  • As part of Budget 2021, the Government of Canada made a transformative investment of more than $27 billion over five years to build a Canada-wide early learning and child care system with provinces and territories. Combined with other investments, including in Indigenous early learning and child care, up to $30 billion over five years will be provided in support of early learning and child care.
  • As part of the agreement with Prince Edward Island, the Government of Canada is investing nearly $121.3 million over five years to help improve regulated early learning and child care for children under the age of six in the province.
  • As part of the Canada-wide Early Learning and Child Care system, the Government of Canada aims to create approximately 250,000 new child care spaces across the country by March 2026 to give families affordable child care options, no matter where they live.
  • Investments in child care will benefit all Canadians. Studies show that for every dollar invested in early childhood education, the broader economy receives between $1.50 and $2.80 in return.

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