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Law to protect long-term funding of federal child care system passes final hurdle

A person makes their way past the Peace Tower on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2024. (Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press) A person makes their way past the Peace Tower on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2024. (Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press)

Legislation that commits the federal government to long-term funding of the national child care system is poised to become law.

The bill aims to enshrine the system into law, making it harder for future governments to defund it.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's government announced the creation of a national child care system in 2021 and struck deals with all provinces and territories to deliver day care for an average of $10 a day by 2026.

Provinces and territories have slashed fees at public and nonprofit child care centres by at least an average of 50 per cent.

The national child care system has been hailed for making daycare more affordable and enabling more women to work, but it continues to face challenges as families struggle to find available spots and operators face rising costs.

The House of Commons approved Senate amendments to the bill that protect services for official-language minorities.

The move came late Thursday as the Commons adjourned early to recognize the death of former prime minister Brian Mulroney.

Conservative MP John Nater rose on a point of order a little after 6 p.m. to offer condolences to the family of "this great statesman" on behalf of parliamentarians.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 29, 2024 


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