• Why does government child-care policy often have little to do with children?

    Economic growth is not the only goal we see masquerading as child-care policy. Some also see child care as a tool to increase fertility rates. Fertility concerns are genuine. With the exception of Israel, no developed country is reaching replacement fertility levels of 2.1. It’s hard to maintain generous social welfare benefits of any kind, be it health care, palliative care, or child care without enough children growing into future taxpayers… another non-child-related reason to enact child-care policy: to grow government, particularly the education ministries that would benefit

  • Seniors have too much house. Millennials have none. And a business model is born

    The most successful home-sharing programs involve a step-by-step process that carefully matches homeowners and tenants, requiring funding for trained facilitators… matched candidates meet, have trial stays and, if both agree, sign a clear contract that outlines expectations and rules while they live together.

  • ‘It’s actually shocking how archaic’ Ontario’s criminal courts are

    Modernization efforts would fall under the responsibility of the Ontario government, which funds the courts. While the previous Liberal government instituted some technological advancements on the civil and family side — such as the ability to file statements of claim and defence online — next to nothing was added on the criminal side… “Wealthy clients pay their lawyers to attend court for them without having to miss time from work, while the most marginalized members of our community are forced to make repeated and unnecessary court appearances.”

  • More police are not the solution to Toronto’s gun violence

    The answers from the communities affected are often to avoid cowboy policing, and to address the roots of gun violence. These answers are backed by plenty of studies showing that, for example, funding for local community services and neighbourhood partnerships goes a long way to disincentivizing crime. Reducing gun violence is only possible when the root factors of crime itself – broken neighbourhoods, inequality of opportunity, educational gaps and so on – are meaningfully addressed.

  • Child Care Deserts in Canada

    This report attempts to map, for the first time in Canada, a complete list of licensed child care spaces across the country against the number of children in a given postal code. In doing so, a number of “child care deserts” are identified as postal codes where there are at least three children in potential competition for each licensed space.

  • Liberals offer the best child care plan for Ontario

    Kathleen Wynne’s Liberals have proposed an achievable plan that does much, but not everything. Andrea Horwath’s NDP vastly over-promises what it can deliver. And Doug Ford’s Progressive Conservatives offer shiny trinkets instead of the services that are actually needed… By making daycare free for preschoolers — the most common age group in daycare — the $2.2-billion Liberal plan gets the most bang for the buck and, just as crucially, the necessary new spaces can realistically be rolled out within the three-year time-frame.

  • How Canada Created a Crisis in Indigenous Child Welfare

    The outcomes for kids in the child welfare system, Indigenous or not, are not good… For Indigenous youth, the issues are worse… Every province and territory makes its own decisions on child welfare, including for reserve communities. So how did they all end up with an overwhelming number of Indigenous children in care? Like every social issue facing Indigenous people in Canada, the origins date back to colonization.

  • The new Toronto megacourthouse is not for youth

    Evidence shows that the most effective way to support young people in conflict with the law, reduce recidivism, and ensure public safety is through community-based programs. Courts and legal services alone can neither address the underlying issues that lead young people into conflict with the law, nor support their rehabilitation. However, once in the system, the best way to treat adolescents appropriately is in separate, specialized youth courts.

  • Community justice hubs to offer addiction, mental health support under same roof as courts

    In the present model, “the judge will say, ‘You need a treatment plan and can you just get on the streetcar and go down the street to CAMH?’ And people walk out the door and they are gone.” Instead, at a justice centre, the “accused actually has access to a social worker, someone they can point to, and say, ‘You need to go talk to that person who is sitting at the back of the courtroom and they are going to help you put together a plan to deal with all the issues you are facing.’ ”

  • Ontario’s child care election promises win praise from B.C. finance minister

    The Wynne government’s recent $2.2 billion budget initiative is coupled with its 2016 commitment to create 100,000 new licensed spots for kids under age 4 within five years. Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath last week vowed to “do better” in her election platform… “When you look at demographics . . . when you have the Governor of the Bank of Canada speaking in favour of child care as a recruitment and retention issue, getting women back into the workforce is critical,”