Parti Québecois leader Pauline Marois promised a daycare spot for every child in need of one, if she and her party are elected on September 4th, 2012. Speaking at a campaign stop in the Terrebonne riding, north of Montreal, she says she could make the pledge a reality by the end of a first PQ mandate.
Marois promised to finish the work she started in 1997, when she launched a network of centres for young children (CPE).
The pledge entails 15,000 more spaces to be added to the 15,000 that were announced in the last provincial budget. She estimated the cost of the new spaces to be around $177 million.
The PQ leader also vowed to finish work on a daycare network, which would privilege members of the CPE rather than home-based daycares. Marois said this would "put order" in the network.
She did however say that daycare permits would be given to those offering services at home.
"We already know that we have about 15,000 spaces ready to be developed, but we will need to make sure that they are developed in the right places and not beside a CPE that already has some."
Marois said she would not increase the fees for daycare services until the promise for spaces was delivered.
"After, we can ask ourselves the question, but for now, I tell you that I do not have the intention to increase daycare service fees," she said.
The leader said the PQ would work with the CPE to make their opening hours more flexible and adapt the service to parents.
CAQ looks at health care reform
The Coalition Avenir Québec hopes to improve the home health care services offered to the elderly by the provincial government.
At a news conference in Granby, southeast of Montreal, party leader François Legault announced that the government should spill 80 per cent of its resources to elders living at home and 20 per cent to nursing homes.
"We know it and it's been shown, it costs less to offer services at home than to place an elderly person in a nursing home. Therefore, at long term, we are winning financially," said Legault.
According to Legault, 16,400 elders are receiving health care at home.
The leader said nursing homes will always be necessary but should be reserved for bigger cases. He said he wants to provide "more means to insure quality services and to train staff."
The CAQ said 4,300 elderly people are waiting for spaces in nursing homes.
If his party is elected in the Sept. 4 provincial election, Legault said his party would create a position of vice president for elders at the Ombudsman office along with creating legal aid centres and simplify tax-revenue forms for the elderly.
"There comes a point when we have to be able to respect our elders," said Legault. "They are the ones who built today's Quebec. We have to take better care of them."
Legault said his party would also focus on the administration of nursing homes. He said it should be possible to fire general directors in the facilities if they are found to be mistreating tenants.
The CAQ did not announce how much these measures would cost but said his party's financial plan should be released later this week.