By Jessica Robinson, Editor-in-Chief
The City of Greater Sudbury has officially announced that the childcare subsidies will continue uninterrupted, regardless of the duration of the strike. This comes just two days after the Lambda published a post highlighting that fact that childcare subsidies would be halted on October 31 if the Laurentian faculty strike continued on long enough.
— Brian Bigger (@BiggerSudbury) October 2, 2017
This change in city policy follows the conversation that exploded on social media, as Sudburians expressed frustration with the city not accounting for the longterm effects halting subsidies would have on student parents, even after the strike is over.
— Cynthia Belfitt (@CBelfitt) September 30, 2017
— Michelle Laurence (@RKinMichelle) September 30, 2017
If they lose their subsidies then they will most likely lose their spots at these day cares which will cause major issues!
— Tom Fenske (@tcfenske) September 30, 2017
Brian Bigger, mayor of the City of Greater Sudbury, announced on Twitter at 4:30pm on Monday, October 2nd that “eligible Laurentian students”—meaning students who were already receiving childcare subsidy prior to the labour disruption—”will continue to receive child care subsidies during the disruption”.
Monique Poirier, Manager of Children’s Services at the City of Greater Sudbury, says that this labour action has given the city an opportunity to revisit their practices with respect to students and labour disruptions.
“We’re going to continue to extend ongoing childcare subsidies for all Laurentian University students until the resolution of the labour dispute,” she says. “Nothing is going to change.”
“We’re following up the letter we sent last week [to students allotted childcare subsidies] with another letter; we’re trying to get that to them as quickly as we can, as well as letting their childcare providers know.”
Poirier explains that the crucial nature of subsidies is not lost on the City of Greater Sudbury.
“We understand how important subsidy is and our goal is to make that as accessible as we can to students,” she says. “This is not a situation that we find ourselves in often, so it’s not as though we have to enact this policy or practice that frequently. So, this was a good opportunity—mind you a stressful one, I understand—but a good opportunity to revisit things and make some changes that are obviously going to benefit everyone.”
The Lambda will continue to post updates on the strike as it unfolds at thelambda.ca.