Emergency Child Care in Ontario: An Unfolding Story (Ontario Only)

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Thursday May 7 2020

On April 17, 2020 the Ford Government announced an expansion of eligible workers able to access free emergency child care in Ontario. It was the right thing to do, even if overdue.

Added to the list of workers were, “federally employed staff including Royal Canadian Mounted Police, Canada Border Services Agency” and Canada Post employees.”

Subsequently we learned that there was not, in fact, a directive issued by the Ford Government to Municipal Child Care Service Managers to restrict access to two-parent families, unless both parents are on the list of “designated” workers.

Instead, the individual Municipal Child Care Service Managers have developed their own set of restrictions, criteria and ranking of eligible workers. These restrictions are in place because there are just not enough spaces available.

What the COVID pandemic reveals is just how under-valued and under-funded human services, like child care, are in this country. What it also reveals is the desperate need for a publicly funded child care system that delivers care that is good for children and available and affordable to their parents.

What the majority of parents with young children need is an early learning and child care system that is accessible, high quality, affordable, and robust enough to be there for when you need it - even during a pandemic.



You will need to apply for the emergency child care in your area. Depending on what municipality you live in, you will be placed on the list in accordance to your municipalities’ restrictions/ranking/criteria.

To get more details about how to register and where to find emergency child care services in your area go to: https://bit.ly/2WA3Vaf

The Province launched this web site to assist families to find information on emergency child care in their area. It has listings of the different Consolidated Municipal Service Managers (towns, cities, counties).

We regret any confusion and inconvenience arising from previous information on emergency child care in Ontario. This is an ongoing crisis with frequently changing and unclear information.


In Solidarity,

Dave Bleakney
2nd National Vice-President