Children and Family Development Minister Mitzi Dean as she introduced two new pieces of legislation on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. (Screen grab)

Children and Family Development Minister Mitzi Dean as she introduced two new pieces of legislation on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. (Screen grab)

B.C. inches towards universal child care, pledges to support Indigenous-led initiatives

The Early Learning and Childcare and Early Childhood Educators recapture the original B.C. Child Care Act introduced in 1996

B.C. introduced the creation of two pieces of legislation Tuesday (June 8) to propel child care in the province towards a more inclusive, universal system.

“These acts are long-overdue,” said Minister Katrina Chen of State for Child Care as she proposed the Early Learning and Childcare (ELCC) and Early Childhood Educators acts.

The ELCC, once enacted, will require the Ministry of Children and Family Development to produce annual progress reports on actions its taken, including its efforts to support Indigenous-led child care.

“It will give the minister responsible the authority to create new regulations, including the ability to set limits on child-care fees for parents,” Chen added.

“Parents are going to see fees being reduced in this province.”

RELATED: B.C. budget to expand $10-a-day child care, but misses the mark on ‘truly universal’ system

Sharon Gregson, spokesperson for the Coalition of Child Care Advocates of B.C. said the group has been calling for legislation of this kind since 2011.

“There is much more for government to do,” she emphasized.

“We are hopeful this legislation will support the development of the universal, high-quality, affordable public system that British Columbians expect.”

Early Childcare Educators act

The proposed ECE act will see a stand-alone statute established for B.C. early childhood educators of whom Chen said 97 per cent are women.

“People involved in taking care of children will have their information published online in a registry. Registrars will also be able to review investigations and complaints into daycares.”

ECEs who have received training abroad will be able to apply for temporary certification in order to get to work faster, filling gaps in the province’s ECE shortage.

The legislation recaptures the momentum of the original B.C. Child Care Act introduced in 1996, which allowed the minister in charge to administer child care subsidies to parents and prevented garnishment or seizure of them.

“Our government committed to transform the fragmented child care ‘patch work’ into an early learning and child care system,” added Mitzi Dean, Minister of Children and Family Development.

The legislation will be adapted based on input from the child care sector, advocates, families, First Nations leaders and Indigenous partners, Chen said.

READ MORE: Federal Budget 2021: Liberals pledge $30B for child care with eye to reducing fees



sarah.grochowski@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism? Make a donation here.

Childcare

Just Posted

Port Alberni court house (Alberni Valley News)
Coroners’ inquest into 2016 death of Port Alberni teen rescheduled for June 21

18-year-old Jocelyn George died of heart failure after spending time in jail cell

CELEBRATING IN STYLE
Members of the 2021 Alberni District Secondary School graduating class pose for a photo at McLean Mill National Historic Site on June 12. Graduates held their prom on Saturday, although things looked a little different due to COVID-19. See more on page A10. (ELENA RARDON / ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS)
Port Alberni 2021 grads celebrate prom with car cruise

Special event held at McLean Mill National Historic Site

The Port Alberni Bombers are one of the newest teams in the VIJHL. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)
Port Alberni Bombers to host first ID camp for roster spots

Roster spots for the Junior B team will be filled at the conclusion of the camp

Douglas Holmes, current Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District chief administrative officer, is set to take on that position at the Regional District of Nanaimo come late August. (Submitted photo)
Regional District of Nanaimo’s next CAO keen to work on building partnerships

Douglas Holmes to take over top administrator role with RDN this summer

AW Neill Elementary School in Port Alberni. (NEWS FILE PHOTO)
SD70 chooses new name for AW Neill School in Port Alberni

New name honours Nuu-chah-nulth Peoples’ connection to region

People watch a car burn during a riot following game 7 of the NHL Stanley Cup final in downtown Vancouver, B.C., in this June 15, 2011 photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Geoff Howe
10 years ago: Where were you during the 2011 Vancouver Stanley Cup Riots?

Smashed-in storefronts, looting, garbage can fires and overturned cars some of the damage remembered today

The Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre estimates that less than five per cent of mass-marketing fraud is ever reported.
Tips to avoid scams targeting Vancouver Island seniors

In most cases, fraudsters impersonate an individual, business or agency seniors recognize and trust

The cannabis dispensary store, located at 1024 Clark Drive in East Vancouver. (Instagram/Budwayonclark)
Vancouver pot shop owner ordered to pay $40K for copying Subway

Store’s mascot is a red-eyed, cannabis-filled smoking sandwich

Vancouver courthouse. (Photo: Tom Zytaruk)
Man loses bid to appeal conviction for 1999 rape at Abbotsford music festival

James Redden, 53, formerly of Nanaimo, was found guilty in 2019 following six-day trial

A health-care worker holds up a sign signalling she needs more COVID-19 vaccines at the ‘hockey hub’ mass vaccination facility at the CAA Centre during the COVID-19 pandemic in Brampton, Ont., on Friday, June 4, 2021. This NHL-sized hockey rink is one of CanadaÕs largest vaccination centres. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
‘Vaxxed to the max’: Feds launch Ask an Expert campaign to encourage COVID shots

Survey shows that confidence in vaccines has risen this spring

Children’s shoes and flowers are shown after being placed outside the Ontario legislature in Toronto on Monday, May 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
Ontario commits $10 million to investigate burial sites at residential schools

Truth and Reconciliation Commission identified 12 locations of unmarked burial sites in Ontario

Singer-songwriter Jann Arden is pictured with a draft horse. (Canadian Horse Defence Coalition)
Jann Arden backs petition to stop ‘appalling’ live horse export, slaughter

June 14 is the International Day to End Live Export of Animals

Two hundred and fifteen lights are placed on the lawn outside the Residential School in Kamloops, B.C., Saturday, June, 13, 2021. The remains of 215 children were discovered buried near the former Kamloops Indian Residential School earlier this month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Days after Kamloops remains discovery, Tk’emlups families gather to unite, move ahead

‘We have to work together because this is going to be setting a precedent for the rest of the country’

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Most Read