Canada Child Benefit still needed alongside national daycare system, minister says

·1 min read

OTTAWA — The federal minister in charge of child-care efforts says she still sees a need for the government's cornerstone children's benefit even in a Canada with a national daycare system.

Families Minister Karina Gould says the Canada Child Benefit was never designed as a child-care program, but to help parents defray the costs of raising a family and reduce poverty rates.

Since the income-tested benefit was introduced in 2016, the poverty rate for children under 18 has fallen from 16.4 per cent in 2015 to 9.7 per cent in 2019, the most recent year for which data is available.

Gould says the push to build a national daycare system is also aimed at easing cost pressures for parents by lowering child-care fees that in some cities can cost more than a monthly mortgage payment.

But even when average fees reach the government's goal of $10-a-day by 2026, Gould says there will still be households that will need the Canada Child Benefit to pay the bills.

It's why Gould says she doesn't see the benefit disappearing from the federal toolkit for families.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Dec. 28, 2021.

Jordan Press, The Canadian Press

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