Ontario weakened its $10-a-day child care funding rules. Now the federal government is demanding answers from the province on whether there have been attempts to undermine the public consultation period to cut the program.
“The government of Ontario must respond to the questions raised about the lack of transparency around the process for cutting child care funding,” reads a scathing public inquiry report released Tuesday by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives.
But Premier Doug Ford told reporters Tuesday he will not respond to CTV News’ questions about why the government has yet to release the documents that allegedly show improper efforts to undermine the government’s consultation on the $10-a-day funding for child care.
“Right now, we need to focus on getting this budget passed so we can go and continue to provide good care and create opportunities for the youth in Ontario. As to the question of whether or not there was any bad faith process and if there was, I would have to defer that to the (Finance) Ministry to be able to answer,” he said.
Ford reiterated his pledge that the government will not scrap the program.
The Liberal government, he said, is currently in the process of implementing the program, but won’t commit to it until the budget is passed.
“Now we actually have to actually deliver and get to balance, which I believe we can do,” he said.
“We believe this is a good investment, we believe this is a good opportunity.”
Premier Doug Ford stands by promise to protect the child care funding system. CTV News
The inquiry was ordered last month and is investigating alleged improper attempts to influence the way the government consulted on the funding system.
The Ford government argues the report is a “lurid and distorted piece of work” that doesn’t understand the funding system.
“The (report) reads more like a screed than a serious public interest inquiry and, without question, it represents a partisan attack on the government of the day,” says the PC Party.
It also argues the report “ignores the substantial evidence of the Ford government’s commitment to investing in our children.”