Not enough daycare spots
You find it difficult to find a spot in daycare for you little bundle of joy? You're not alone. Under the pressure of a never seen before population increase, Saint-Laurent has 2334 kids on the waiting list to start at a Centre de la petite enfance (CPE) and 785 other children on the waiting list for home childcare service.
"The problem is that there are many CPE in the workplace, whose spots are taken by nonresidents. So the actual spots for Saint-Laurent's children are limited while the demand is high," says Gabriele Guay, coordinator of COSSL's plan d'action petite enfance.
Ms. Guay, is concerned about the lack of quality and affordable daycare service for vulnerable families "private daycare, can cost up to $ 42 per day," says the coordinator. "Since the government reimbursement is only done from time to time, families who have a money flow problem or just money problem simply cannot afford to put their child in a daycare" she says.
The last daycare services created are not necessarily accessible to families in need. From 2007 to 2011, 175 subsidizes spots opened up while 1290 spots in non-subsidised daycare were created.
This may affect vulnerable children. «"It is difficult to do follow-up with children when they are not in the system, it is more difficult to fulfill their needs," said Ms. Guay.
Child care professional can discover vulnerabilities. "While parents are fulfilling the needs of their children, the daycare service provider is trained to detect special needs and is connected to the ressources. It is a key person for parents because they can refer a child to a specialist", said the coordinator.
"In order to prepare a kid to school, it is important that they attend a daycare who has a government license, either a CPE, private and subsidized daycare center or home daycare service supervise by a coordinating offices" says Ms. Guay. It is because these environments provide stimulation for an early start in learning how to read and write.
According to the coordinator, this also has an impact on the parents, especially if they are looking for a job, recent immigrants, in precarious employment or work part-time or irregular hours.
Saint-Laurent has 2852 spots in different type daycare services.