New Website Helps Parents Avoid Risky Child Care Situations

OTTAWA, Oct. 1, 2013 /CNW/ - A new website aimed at helping parents navigate Canada's hit-and-miss child care patchwork was launched today. A buyer beware approach is necessary just as a surge of revelations about the risks of unknown, unregulated child care arrangements has drawn public attention in recent months. Findingqualitychildcare.ca informs parents about child care basics.

"Confusion reigns about which child care is regulated, what's legal and what isn't, and what kind of oversight regulations actually provide," said Martha Friendly, Executive Director of the Child Care Resource and Research Unit. "Many parents don't know that all provinces have regulations and oversight for some home child care or that unlicensed full-day child care centres are not legal."

Recently a flood of children's deaths and media coverage of risky child care situations, including children left alone, marijuana grow-ops and a mother taking out an ad to warn other parents, has drawn new attention to the pitfalls of trying to find and pay for quality care.

"Affordable high quality child care is a scarce resource in Canada and families are pretty much on their own," said Cindi Foreman, CUPW 2nd National Vice-President. "This website should help, but public education is by no means a substitute for a real child care system."

The website, in English and French, provides information about child care in each province/territory such as key regulations, which child care is required to be regulated and a detailed checklist parents can use when looking at child care settings.  It also includes a 20-minute video showing high quality child care centre environments. The website and video were developed by the Childcare Resource and Research Unit and the Canadian Union of Postal Workers.

SOURCE: Canadian Union of Postal Workers

For further information:

Martha Friendly, Executive Director Childcare Resource and Research Unit
www.childcarecanada.orgmfriendly@childcarecanada.org, (c) 416.562.7579

Cindi Foreman, CUPW 2nd National Vice-President
www.cupw.cacforeman@cupw-sttp.org, 613.236.7238 / (c) 613.294.7645


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