The Official Opposition critic for Education and Early Childhood Development is calling on the Higgs government to partner quickly with the Federal government and bring ten-dollar a day childcare to New Brunswick.
“The high cost of childcare in New Brunswick is a significant burden on many families and can be a barrier for parents looking to go back to work or school after having a baby. Affordable childcare is not only beneficial for families but also contributes to growing our workforce and our economy” says Benoît Bourque, Liberal Education and Early childhood development critic. “It is in everyone’s best interest for the Higgs government to sign an agreement with the Federal government and bring ten-dollar a day childcare to New Brunswick.”
With the child poverty rate in New Brunswick being higher than the Canadian average, Mr. Bourque believes affordable childcare is desperately needed in the province.
“With the high cost of early childhood education services, many families are forced to become a single income household because forgoing a salary is often more affordable than childcare” says the MLA for Kent South. “With a cost of around 10-dollars a day, this could level the playing field and make early childhood education a realistic option for many more families.”
Nova Scotia recently signed a five-year deal with Ottawa where the Federal government would invest $605 million while the province would only need to invest 40 million.
“The Federal government has put hundreds of millions of dollars on the table, it’s now up to the Higgs government to come to the table and make affordable quality childcare a reality in New Brunswick” says Benoît Bourque. “We need to attract more young families to the province and keep New Brunswick families here, but I fear many may go to Nova Scotia to benefit from this program if we don’t get on board.”
The Leader of the Official Opposition hopes Premier Higgs will put partisanship aside and do what is in the best interest of New Brunswickers. “This is one of those times that as public leaders we must park our ideology and make decisions based on what is best for the people we serve and for future generations” says Roger Melanson.