The Alberta government announced last week that they are creating a new advisory group to help in the process of creating a long-term plan to support working parents.
According to the announcement, the Supporting Alberta Working Parents Advisory Group will review the latest research, data, and economic analysis as they develop short and long-term initiatives to ensure parents can participate in Alberta’s economic recovery.
The group will also advise the provincial government on how to best leverage federal funds to address the needs of parents and childcare operators in Alberta.
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This announcement comes days after the federal government announced plans to implement a national daycare programme that would see parents paying an average of only $10 a day for childcare.
The Alberta government rejected that plan, so it seems interesting that they now want this working group to give them advice on accessing federal funds after just saying they will refuse federal funds.
As part of the announcement, Rebecca Schulz, the minister of Children’s Services, said that “we need a made-in-Alberta approach so we can better support women and working families in our province.”
Here’s the thing though.
We can have a made-in-Alberta approach and still participate in the $10-a-day childcare programme. The federal government has stated that they intend to work with provinces as they develop the national programme. Alberta has a chance to provide input into that process.
The advisory group is composed of members from civil society, business, municipal government and parent advocacy groups:
- Heather Colberg, Town of Drumheller
- Liz Elliott, Families that Work
- Kristi Hines, Hines Health Services, Fort McMurray
- Elan MacDonald, Edmonton Chamber of Commerce
- Liz O’Neill, Boys & Girls Clubs Big Brothers Big Sisters of Edmonton & Area
- Beba Svigir, Calgary Immigrant Women’s Association
- Sue Tomney, YWCA Calgary
- Anita Turna, Alberta Association of Child Care Operators (AACCO)