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Province caps fees at new child care facilities

Laying the groundwork for universal child care in BC.

Tuesday January 19, 2021 | VICTORIA, BC

by Kiley Verbowski | Island Social Trends | Editor: Mary P Brooke

A cap on fees for parents to have their children attend at new child care facilities that are receiving the Child Care Fee Reduction Initiative (CCFRI) will help keep new child care spaces affordable for BC families.

The change to the Child Care Fee Reduction Initiative (CCFRI) will come into effect on April 1, 2021, for newly established facilities. This includes new child care centres, those that have changed ownership or location, and facilities enrolling in the CCFRI program for the first time.

“We’re making sure rates are more affordable for families and fair for all child care providers in the sector,” said Katrina Chen, Minister of State for Child Care, “while also supporting our long-term plan to bring universal child care to British Columbia.”

Katrina Chen, Minister of State for Child Care.

Keeping fees in line with other provincial rates:

To make sure parents continue to benefit from the CCFRI, a fee cap for newly established facilities will help to keep monthly fees in line with those charged by other local providers who are delivering the same type of care.

Prior to this change, a new child care facility could set their initial monthly fees at any level and qualify for the CCFRI.

Newly established facilities will be eligible for the CCFRI if their initial child care fees (including any proposed increases for the duration of the funding term) are at or below the 70th percentile for fees in the region and for the same type of care.

child care, playtime

The fee cap will be reviewed annually. The province will make adjustments, as needed, to reflect changes to the cost of living and operating a business in the region.

The Ministry of Children and Family Development worked with the Provincial Child Care Council to develop a fair approach to capping fees that keeps new spaces affordable for parents, while also recognizing child care operating costs differ around the province.

Child Care Fee Reduction Initiative:

Since April 2018, more than 35,000 children and their families have accessed child care for $10 a day or less, thanks to the CCFRI. There are more than 65,000 licensed child care spaces across the province.

Mitzi Dean, MLA
Minister of Children and Family Development Mitzi Dean, MLA (Esquimalt-Metchosin), [Island Social Trends photo – Nov 2019]

“We know how important it is for parents to have access to child care they can afford in their community,” said Mitzi Dean, Minister of Children and Family Development. “This is a positive step forward for families today, and it helps to lay the groundwork for building a universal child care system in B.C.”

Minister Dean has spent her entire career (including before elected office) in support of families and working toward the development of services to the well-being of children and families.

The Province has invested $2 billion over three years to bring affordable, high-quality child care to more BC families.

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