Editorial Cartoon by Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Wednesday April 18, 2018
Andrea Horwath defends party’s big-spending platform
Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath knows her plan to provide free or low-cost licensed daycare to families across the province will cost billions of dollars, but said the program will become sustainable in the long run.
The NDP platform, released Monday, promises to spend $375 million in the first year of the childcare strategy, followed by another $1 billion in the second year. By 2023 the price tag rises to more than $3 billion annually.
Under the plan, families earning less than $40,000 will get free daycare, while those with higher household incomes will pay an average of $12 per day.
The NDP leader told CBC Radio’s Ottawa Morning Tuesday the idea behind the program is to get more women back into the workforce.
“It’s a sustainable plan,” Horwath said. “It’s one that recognizes that some families can pay some money toward childcare, but the lowest-income families simply are not able to afford anything at all.”
Some families could end up paying more than $12 per day, Horwath said, but most will pay less. She was unable to pinpoint the income cutoff that would determine whether a family will qualify for the $12 daily rate.
“Unlike the other plan that’s out there, our plan is one that’s got universal access to childcare. It’s not about how old your little ones are. It’s about how much your family can afford to pay,” she said. (Source: CBC)