British Columbians Aware of Child Care Problems Facing Parents

Relying on grandparents and reducing expenses in the household are not regarded as plausible solutions.

Vancouver, BC – Most British Columbians know about the difficulties that parents have when seeking child care in the province, and believe a proper child care system would alleviate some of these problems, a survey conducted by Insights West for $10aDay has found.

The online survey of a representative sample of British Columbians shows that four-in-five British Columbians (82%) are aware that child care in the province can cost families as much as rent or mortgage.

The notion that most families would not need child care services if they reduced their expenses so that one parent could afford to stay at home is rejected by 65% of British Columbians. In addition, 77% agree that having a proper child care system in the province would eliminate the need of parents to use unregulated facilities.

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“In my past role as a manager of the Westview Child Care Centre in Prince Rupert, I had daily calls from parents looking for a child care spaces that were just not available,” says Emily Mlieczko, Executive Director of Early Childhood Educators of British Columbia (ECEBC). “There are only enough licensed spaces in this province for one-in-five children, so families are often stuck using unregulated care.”

Respondents were split (48% agree, 48% disagree) on the idea of grandparents helping with child care more, to reduce the cost for families. A majority of respondents aged 55 and over (53%) disagree with this concept.

“The public is aware of the difficulties that parents in British Columbia are facing when they require child care,” says Mario Canseco, Vice President, Public Affairs, at Insights West. “Reducing expenses to a minimum or turning grandparents into de-facto child care providers are not regarded as solutions.”

Two thirds of British Columbians (68%) mistakenly assume that British Columbia is among the top provinces in Canada when it comes to the proportion of mothers with children under 5 years who are currently in the labour force. In fact, BC ranks in the bottom three according to the Early Childhood Education and Care in Canada 2012 report.

In fact, practically nine-in-ten British Columbians (87%) believe that, when child care is affordable and available to parents, more mothers are able to work and pay taxes.

About Insights West:

Insights West is a progressive, Western-based, full-service marketing research company. It exists to serve the market with insights-driven research solutions and interpretive analysis through leading-edge tools, normative databases, and senior-level expertise across a broad range of public and private sector organizations. Insights West is based in Vancouver and Calgary and has fifteen full-time employees.

About $10aDay

The $10aDay Plan is a concrete strategy to meet the needs of children, women, families, and employers for affordable child care that costs families no more than $10 a day, provides an increased number of quality spaces for children across the province, and provides better wages and training for Early Childhood Educators. First released in April 2011, the $10aday Plan has support from local governments, labour, business, seniors, media, academics, women’s organizations, school districts, medical health officers, early childhood and social justice groups.  For more information go to www.10aDay.ca.

About this Release:

Results are based on an online study conducted from December 2 to December 8, 2014, among 862 British Columbians who are aged 18+ and are Your Insights panel members, including 271 with recent child care experience. YourInsights.ca is Insights West’s in-house access panel offering on-demand samples for both clients and research suppliers looking for Western Canadian populations. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is +/- 3.3 percentage points for British Columbia, nineteen times out of twenty. Click to view the detailed data tabulations for this study.

For further information, please contact:

Mario Canseco
Vice President, Public Affairs, Insights West
778-929-0490
mariocanseco@insightswest.com

Emily Mlieczko
Executive Director, Early Childhood Educators of BC
604-709-6063
Executive.Director@ecebc.ca

Sharon Gregson
Spokesperson for the Coalition of Child Care Advocates of BC
604-505-5725
sgregson@cnh.bc.ca

 

Photograph: Donnie Ray Jones