The Parti Québécois government unveiled how it will distribute 15,000 new $7-a-day daycare spaces across the province.
Quebec Families Minister Nicole Léger said every region of the province will get new spaces, including more than 2,000 in Montreal. Another 2,000 will be reserved for the province's underprivileged neighborhoods. And 300 spaces will be set-aside for aboriginal communities, said Léger.
Almost 85 per cent of new spaces will go to non-profit government run CPE daycares, which Léger said offer more consistency across the system.
"We made a choice to favour social equality," she said.
But some private operators say the PQ is making a mistake.
Private centres disappointed
President of The Quebec Private Daycares Association, Sylvain Lévesque, said private daycares are better for parents and tax payers.
"We have exactly the same rules and regulations," said Lévesque. "We develop the spot more rapidly and the spots cost less."
The province will begin taking applications from daycares for the new $7-a-day spaces on February 14. The application window will stay open for four months, ending on June 14.
The PQ has promised to add 28,000 daycare spaces—including the 15,000 announced Thursday and another 13,000 allocated but not created by the former Charest government—to bring the province's total to 250,000 daycare spaces by 2016.
By then, the added annual cost to taxpayers will be an estimated $260-million.
Distribution across the province
Total 7, 333