TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Feb. 9, 2011) - Without a new public investment in the 2011 provincial budget, Ontarians can expect to see child care fees increase from 15 to 30 per cent or cause some programs to close. The Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care and the Ontario Federation of Labour are launching a provincial tour to call on the Ontario Government to make affordable child care a public priority. 

In Ontario, only 20 per cent of children have access to a licensed child care space. Without subsidies to reduce fees to affordable levels, like those in Manitoba and Québec, many Ontario parents are paying between $40 and $60 a day for each child. At this rate, child care fees can run between $10,000 and $15,000 a year and are often the second highest expense for young families.

The provincial tour has already visited Belleville and Peterborough and will be in Thunder Bay on Wednesday, February 9 to sound the alarm that a new financial crisis threatens Ontario's early learning and child care programs. The tour will visit Hamilton, Windsor, Kitchener, Sudbury and Ottawa over the coming month.

The Thunder Bay community forum will highlight the local importance of child care and the specific challenges facing parents in region.

WHO: Andrea Calver, Coordinator, Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care
  Sid Ryan, President, Ontario Federation of Labour
   
WHAT: Community Forum – Will Child Care Survive?
   
WHERE: West Thunder Community Centre, 915 South Edward Street
   
WHEN: Wednesday, February 9, 2011. from 5:30 to 8:00 p.m.

Contact Information: Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care
Andrea Calver
Coordinator
416-538-0628 x 4
416-434-8031 (cell)
www.childcareontario.org
or
Ontario Federation of Labour
Sid Ryan
President
416-209-0066 (cell)
or
Ontario Federation of Labour
Joel Duff
Communications
416-443-7665
416-707-0349 (cell)
www.ofl.ca