Tuesday, December 06, 2005

An Alternative to Both Platforms

The cold medication I'm on only lets me small periods of clarity before I fall back into a coma, so I need to be quick.

Right of Center Ice sums up my apprehension to the Liberal Party's plan for a nationalized day care strategy:
Why not take out the middleman (Parents) and give the money straight to the child care system?
That's why I don't like the Liberal Party's policy at all. I'm not sure I'd consider myself a middleman when it comes to the welfare of my kids. That's just me, though.

Truth be told, I'm not entirely sold on the Conservative Party's platform either, but of the two - it involves me deciding what's best, and that's certainly better. The infusion of money will certainly help lighten our burden, but I'm not sure about the universality of it all.

I think a better policy for nationalized daycare could go something like this, which combines accessibility and choice - plus, involves little or no extra bureaucracy creation. You may argue it's more expensive - maybe, maybe not.
  • Increase Employement Insurance (EI) benefits for childcare leave up to 24 months (an increase of 12 months). This allows the child's primary caregiver the option to remain home with the child for the first two years. The EI benefit does not benefit the wealthy, because it's capped. Of course, this would need to be negotiated with the provinces to amend their labour laws to allow the time off.
  • Spend the childcare funding amount on nursery and pre-school programs at the school board level. Invest the money into provincial school boards to create school programs for toddlers and pre-schoolers, so that children can enter the school system earlier, at age 2. I mean, kindergarten starts at age 4 here in Ontario, so what's adding on 2 years.
  • If you're in a province that funds a separate school system, you would have the option to send your portion of funding to that separate system.
There's no new bureaucracy created - the existing EI benefit payout structure would continue, plus provincial ministries of education via local school boards would be responsible for setting up the local day care solutions. School boards, managed by teachers and parent trustees, would oversee the community needs for day care infrastructure - new buildings, more staff, whatever is required.

Provinces with existing day care solutions, could use this funding to help subsidize their existing plans.

The cost, is of course, debatable.

Back to sleep now.

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Myrddin Wyllt said...

Reminds me of an old documentory called the Children of the state and brings visions of little Liberals in red jump suits being trained to be socialists.
How long until we are a one party state with policies like this one?
What next Martin's youth camps?

Jim (Progressive Right) said...