On behalf of YWCA Edmonton, I want to thank the Government of Canada and Government of Alberta for reaching this long-awaited transformative and historic deal on child care. Along with YWCA Calgary, we were honoured to play a small role behind-the-scenes to help government officials get this deal done. It is an important investment in our collective future and goes a long way in creating a more equitable, safe community for all.
A deal like this has been decades in the making. Ever since the 1940s when YWCA Edmonton opened one of the first child care programs in the province, we have championed building an affordable, high-quality system that doesn’t leave any child behind. This work became more urgent in light of the COVID-19 crisis that has disproportionately affected women. In the spring of 2020, the four YWCAs of Alberta released an economic recovery plan that put childcare at the top of the to-do list. YWCA Canada also included child care as an important pillar of any successful COVID-19 economic recovery plan.
And while today is for celebrating, this is just Day 1 of a deal that still has a long way to go. YWCA Edmonton and the YWCAs of Alberta are committed to ensuring accountability and a roll out that works for women and families, no matter where you live in Alberta.
— Katherine O’Neill, CEO YWCA Edmonton