Friday, December 16, 2005
Rick Mercer mentioned this in passing in his blog (Link), but I think it bares repeating: The Conservatives' proposed $1200/year childcare allowance works out to $25 a week, contrary to all the faux outrage on the Conservatives part, won't even pay for a single case of beer. So my question is, what kind of quality childcare are they expecting people to be able to afford from private providers for that amount of money?
The proposed amount is not enough money for those who need it, and is indeed just extra cash in the bank for those who don't (the actual target of the beer and popcorn money comment wasn't irresponsible lower-income parents but upper-income families who didn't need the money.)
So the actual number of people who would benefit from this scheme is some small wedge of people somewhere in the middle, whereas with the Liiberals and NDP's proposals for childcare, everyone benefits equally by a full-fledged system.
In the U.S. the conservatives have let the public school system rot away to such a state to make vouchers look like a viable alternative, but in Canada, fortunatley, we haven't gotten there yet, and the idea still looks ludicrous.
Update: My last post on the subject is here: Link.
When I was younger I would make $2.00/hour for babysitting, I don't know what the current rates are but the $25 would pay for 3 days of a 12 year watching your children for 8 hours a day back in 1990. Who the hell are they kidding.
There is no perfect solution to daycare, it is a personal choice and sometimes a sacrifice that needs to be made on an individual basis. But ignoring people who do not choose the government sanctioned institutional model, and encouraging the separation of children from their parents (or at least providing an incentive, or little choice) is the worst of the options in my opinion.