With the ongoing discussions surrounding child care – the availability and cost – you’d think that some politician would clue in and put some money toward healing the system. Instead, parents [read: most often women] are left to pay: by paying out more for child care or by working less. Regardless of which way they are able or required to go, the parents and the child both end up losing something in the short and long term. A working less mom loses retirement savings and, if working part-time, may not climb a corporate ladder as quickly as her full time counterparts. A child in the strained child care system may have to get to know several care givers, as wages can’t keep up with other sectors, should a position be available at all.
The Magpie will be going to day care [that’s the plan, anyway] and I’m hoping the fact that we’ll have been on the lists for 18 months, instead of the usual 12, gives us some sort of advantage. Part of me suspects that hope is entirely misplaced, but I’m clinging onto it for all I’m worth. Literally. Should part time employment ever be an option for me, I suspect that it would create far more questions than it might be worth. And part time day care is even more difficult to come by than full time day care – and begs the question if paying for a full time spot while working part time is enough to put one in the crazy house.
Combine articles like this Tyee piece, a little hayfever and a nagging headache and I’m getting rather depressed. Or is that oppressed…
Having said that, Mr.Q is ready and willing to be a stay-at-home dad at the drop of a hat. So, while I may be depressed about it, only one of us is truly being financially oppressed. What is so impossible about having access to affordable child care in a city – a country, even – where both parents need to work for a comfortable living today, never mind tomorrow?
My apologies for the downer tonight. I need a bath. I need a glass of wine. I need to get at least 6 of tonight’s 7 lottery numbers. Or, better yet, I need to get a phone call from one of the daycares we’ve applied to confirming a space for the Magpie this December.