July 12, 2013 - HOME CHILD CARE ASSOCIATION OF ONTARIO CALLS FOR ALL HOME CHILD CARE TO BE LICENSED IN ONTARIO
In response to recent tragedies in unlicensed home child care settings, the Home Child Care Association of Ontario (HCCAO) is calling on the provincial government to require all child care providers in Ontario to meet current minimum licensing standards. The Association further calls for a commitment from the provincial government to increase the number of licensed child care spaces available to meet the needs of families across the province.
The HCCAO represents more than 70 Licensed Home Child Care Agencies, providing licensed, home-based early learning and child care to more than 60 000 children in over 3000 homes across Ontario. Under existing legislation, Licensed Home Child Care Agencies and the individuals they contract with to provide home-based child care programs must follow all of the regulations contained within the province’s Day Nurseries Act (DNA). These provisions cover such areas as health and safety, program quality, nutrition, and police reference checks.
In Ontario, many individuals care for children in their home without being affiliated with a licensed home child care agency. These individuals provide "unlicensed" care and are not required to meet legislative standards, with the exception of the provision dealing with the number of children in their care.
Under the Day Nurseries Act, unlicensed child care providers may care for a maximum of five children in addition to their own children. Licensed home child care providers are restricted to providing care to no more than five children, including their own children under the age of 6, and are also subject to the following restrictions: no more than two children may be under 2 years of age and no more than three children may be under 3 years.
The HCCAO membership is committed to the well-being of children and has a strong interest in contributing to the dialogue about how child care programs for children are organized, delivered and regulated throughout the province. The HCCAO believes:
- Licensing standards should apply to all home-based child care.
- Legislated standards should apply to all home-based child care.
- All children should have equal access to quality care.
Quality home-based care is achieved through the establishment of a minimum set of legislated standards that include: expectations regarding age-appropriate programming, developmentally appropriate supervision practices, minimum safety and health standards, regular inspections and mechanisms for enforcement, fair remuneration for caregivers, access to professional development and training, education and social support.
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July 12, 2013 - Child found dead in illegal child care home in Vaughan
February 11, 2013 - FUNDING HOME CHILD CARE - MOVING TO BASE FUNDING
As the provincial government moves forward with plans to modernize child care, a revamped funding model for the licensed home child care sector is a critical component of this exercise to support agency stability and access for families to a quality service. In December 2012, the province made a significant step forward, introducing a new funding model that gives much more flexibility to CMSMs (Consolidated Municipal Service Managers) and DSSABs (District Social Services Administration Boards) with respect to how they allocate their envelope of child care funding. CMSMs and DSSABs will be able to more effectively reflect the diverse needs of their communities with this new flexibility. At the same time, the Home Child Care Association of Ontario encourages the provincial government to take a leadership role in this next phase to ensure that CMSMs and DSSABs enter into new funding arrangements with not for profit third party organizations that will address major obstacles to viability and access.
The Home Child Care Association of Ontario is recommending the introduction of a "base funding" mechanism. This report defines base funding, describes three current funding structures in place across Ontario, identifies the challenges with each of the existing models and makes specific recommendations for moving forward with a base funding mechanism.