In a letter to municipalities last week, education ministry officials confirmed $12.7 million in new funding will be available to help licensed child-care centres and home child-care agencies cover added costs related to the Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act (otherwise known as Bill 148). The purpose of the new funding is to shield parents with children in licensed child care from fee increases when Ontario’s minimum wage rises to $14 in January.
The additional funding from the Ontario Ministry of Education for licensed child-care centres and home child-care agencies is a significant precedent for the Developmental Services Sector (the “DS Sector”). It is recognition on the part of the Ontario Government that the changes introduced through Bill 148 will have a disproportionate impact on certain sectors. The rationale behind providing additional funding for the child-care sector is equally applicable to the DS Sector, if not stronger. Agencies and families in the DS Sector should continue to reach out to the Ministry of Community and Social Services and let them know that additional funding is necessary to shield families and individuals with disabilities from fee increases or service reductions.
PooranLaw will continue to share information as it becomes available and to advocate with agencies and families in the DS Sector to ensure the Ministry is made aware of the significant impact of Bill 148.