Gender-based violence: the importance of affordable, accessible childcare

Canadian research shows that “there is a direct link between economic empowerment and gender-based violence. Women with domestic violence experiences have more disrupted work histories, are on lower personal incomes, have had to change jobs more often and are employed at higher levels in casual and part time work than women without these experiences”[1].

In addition to needing emotional support and encouragement, women leaving an abusive relationship often need support in reconstructing their lives. This can include practical supports, like access to transportation, career training, job-related expenses, childcare, supplies and services for children, and a safe place to live[2].

In this, affordable, accessible childcare is an important resource in the lives of survivors of violence.

Despite this, the Ontario Progressive Conservative government will move ahead with some of its municipal funding cuts for public health and child care next year. Starting in 2020, municipalities will have to pay 20 per cent of the cost of creating new child care spaces, which the province previously fully funded. This will likely have a direct impact on the availability of childcare spaces in Ontario, as well as the costs of childcare.

The cuts will put planned new daycare spaces in jeopardy, even as 13,300 Toronto children alone are on the waiting list for fee subsidies.

Learn more about the importance of affordable, accessible childcare to families in Ontario here.

Let your MPP know that you don’t want to see childcare spaces cut: contact them here.

[1] Province of Ontario. May 2018. It’s Never Okay: Ontario’s Gender-Based Violence Strategy. Online: 8.

[2] Krystle Maki for Women’s Shelters Canada. August 2017. Housing, Homelessness, and Violence Against Women: A Discussion Paper. 24)

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