The Government of Canada and the Government of Manitoba are working closely together to ensure families have access to the affordable, high quality and safe early learning and child care opportunities their children need to succeed.
Today, the Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development, and the Honourable Heather Stefanson, Manitoba’s Minister of Families, announced additional support for early learning and child care through the one-year Canada-Manitoba Early Learning and Child Care Agreement.
The agreement allocates over $15 million in 2020-21 for early learning and child care investments in Manitoba. In particular, the province will continue to invest in creating inclusive child care spaces, maintain its free online Science of Early Development living textbook, expand its core professional development program and mentorship program for at-home providers, and create a one-time, $1.5 million COVID-19 Response Grant for facilities that have re-opened during the pandemic.
This agreement builds on the shared commitments made in the Multilateral Early Learning and Child Care Framework and outlines Manitoba’s unique child care needs and priorities, including those resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. It will ensure this funding continues to be available to support child care programs and services for Manitoba families in 2020-21.
This funding supports the Manitoba government’s annual investment of more than $181 million in early learning and child care initiatives.
In addition, the Government of Canada recently announced $625 million to address the reduced availability of child care and the unique needs stemming from the pandemic across Canada. This year, the Government of Canada will invest almost $1.2 billion in total in early learning and child care.
“High-quality early learning experiences are essential to the intellectual, emotional and physical development of our children. The Government of Canada is pleased to continue working with the Government of Manitoba to ensure that all children and families in Manitoba have equal access to the quality early learning and child care they need to succeed.”
– The Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development
“Child care is a priority for the Government of Manitoba and for Manitoba families, especially as we continue to respond to and recover from the pandemic. The extension of our bilateral funding agreement provides significant, ongoing support to the sector as we work together to ensure families have access to child care choices that meet their needs.”
– The Honourable Heather Stefanson, Manitoba’s Minister of Families
For Canadian families, high-quality, affordable child care is more than a convenience-it’s a necessity.
The Government of Canada and the Government of Manitoba are ensuring that every child gets the best possible start in life.
The federal government entered into bilateral agreements with all provinces and territories to provide them with $1.2 billion over three years for early learning and child care programs, starting in 2017-18. This builds on Manitoba’s investments of more than $540 million over the same period.
These important investments in early and learning and child care helped to create close to 40,000 more affordable child care spaces nationally prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The federal government is now working with each jurisdiction to negotiate one-year bilateral agreements that will provide $400 million in 2020-21. This funding will continue to support the early learning and child care sector and will build on previous success.
The Government of Manitoba’s action plan for 2020-21 continues to build on the success of the original pillars and initiatives of its early learning and child care plan, while considering the implications of the COVID-19 pandemic and any potential future system disruptions.
Manitoba will continue to invest in creating additional high-quality inclusive child care spaces and offering training opportunities for early learning and child care workers. The province will also invest in a one-time, $1.5 million COVID-19 Response Grant to support child care centres that have re-opened following pandemic closures.