Thank you Mr. Chair and to all Members of the Committee for the opportunity to present information for your consideration on Bill C- 303.
The Institute of Marriage and Family Canada is a research think tank, designed to draw together the social science on issues such as the raising of our children. We believe that you, the decision makers, should consider all the factors involved. To this end, I am pleased to present a cross section of some of our work for your consideration.
Much of this research comes out of the documents before you and is also available in full on our website: imfcanada.org.
One of the crucial pieces of the childcare debate is to best determine what it is that parents actually want. There has been much rhetoric and a variety of polls of varying levels of quality done on this very question.
Of primary importance is for officials to not presume what parents of young children want, but to actually ask them. To this end, one year ago we published the results of a survey that delved directly into this question.
Copies of this poll have been included in your package and the Clerk’s office was forwarded a copy for translation.
Although there is a lot of information in the survey, please allow me to highlight a couple of the key pieces that are pertinent to your debate today.
Of the parents that have young children, that may actually be accessing childcare, 78% indicated that they would prefer if a parent was able to stay home to raise their children. This did not change significantly when we factored in the gender of the parents, the geographic region that they came from or their respective level of education.
Of course we know that having one parent stay at home is not always feasible, whether this is due to single parent families, fiscal constraints or other logistical considerations. To this end, we then asked the respondents what their preference for childcare would be. The results that we found were quite dramatic. A majority of 53% indicated that they would prefer a relative to care for their child, followed by 20% preferring a family childcare setting. Trailing were non-profit childcare at less than 17% and for-profit childcare at a low of 7%.
Download the full presentation here
Download the transcript of the full meeting here
The poll referred to in the presentation, Canadians make choices about childcare
Bill C-303: A child care fairy tale. Fact or fiction?