Today we congratulate the Federal government in concluding 13 child care agreements to improve the quality of licensed early learning and child care and to make it more affordable, more available, and more inclusive. We also want to thank the generations of early childhood educators and child care advocates who have fought for this hard-won historical agreement – we would not be here without you. We look forward to celebrating with you on Wednesday March 30th at 7pm at our Power of Us event co-hosted with the Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care.
This is an important step forward, but the agreements, and the first transfers of federal funds to the provinces and territories, mark only the start of the work still to be done.
The Ontario plan to raise the “wage floor” to $18/hour for early childhood educators and to $20/hour for supervisors and provide an $1/hour wage enhancement each year after until 2025-26 - topping out at $25/hour - is hugely inadequate and a disappointing disservice to early childhood educators and child care workers/providers across Ontario. It does not address the crisis of recruitment and retention in Ontario by funding the salaries and benefits necessary to solve it. The commitments made by other provincial and territorial governments, such as the development of a salary grid for early childhood educators, are notably absent from the Ontario agreement and along with the low wage floor demonstrates that we still have much work to do to achieve professional pay in our sector.
We will continue to advocate alongside ECEs, child care workers, providers, employers, parents and stakeholders across Ontario on the implementation of a salary grid as called for in our open letter:
A salary grid that ensures at least
- a $25 per hour starting wage for non-qualified staff
- a $30 per hour starting wage for Early Childhood Educators
- a daily rate minimum for licensed home child care providers
- and a commensurate benefits package for all.
Please join us on Wednesday March 30 at 7pm for The Power of Us: On the road to a Canada-wide early learning and child care system, an event to celebrate all of you for your hard work in getting an agreement, discuss the deal, and talk about what might be next. This video speaks to the spirit and work of Educators and advocates that we'll be celebrating!