Friday, March 31, 2006

"Building a Community Architecture"

Brain Lemon does the math and estimates the cost of a National Daycare Program assuming everyone eligible to claim their entitlement lined up for their ration.

And with admirable perseverence, Joanne's Journey looks for the facts supporting a statement recently made in a top story CTV article and fails to find any.
I voluntarily undertook the assignment on behalf of some of my fellow bloggers [..] to try and track down the data that led to CTV's statement that "most Canadians would prefer a national day-care program over a federal cash payout", as it related to the YWCA's recent media circus over their report, "Building a Community Architecture" in support of universal daycare.

I simply wanted to know what facts supported the data; a simple question, I thought. After all, this Parliament could fall on the daycare issue, and the politicians' beliefs about Canadians' opinions in this regard could be the tipping point. I never realized how persistent I would have to be to ferret out the truth.

You can read some of my previous posts to discover how much digging I had to do to climb up the chain of command at the YWCA National office. Nobody seemed to know much about this report. Even the co-author, Fahreen Beg had to direct my enquiry to Jenny Robinson, Director of National Initiatives, who apparently coordinated the project and report.

At this point I was getting a little suspicious. The co-author didn't know anything about it?

Several more emails were sent out to Jenny asking how CTV came to the conclusion from the report that 'most Canadians would prefer a National Day Care Program...'

In reply, I simply received form letters referring to the study.
The search ends with the writer of the article, who based her findings on a Canadian Press article and a portion of the YWCA report - seems she didn't really bother to read the entire agenda.

CTV: News Staff [Alicia Kay Markson with help from Canadian Press and YWCA representatives]

Most Canadians would prefer a national day-care program over a federal cash payout, says a new report prepared by YWCA Canada.

"You can give people money in hand, but if there is nowhere to spend that money, it's not going to help them in any significant way," said Debra Mayer, the principal researcher for the YWCA Canada study.

[..] Although YWCA Canada supports the government's decision to give money to families with young children, Mayer argues that this money "doesn't help a child with a disability attend an inclusive program."

Four community task forces were set up in Halifax, Vancouver, Martensville, Sask., and Cambridge, Ont., to look at how child care could be strengthened.

Each of the groups said they wanted integrated services and they wanted it publicly funded, said study director Jenny Robinson.

"What we find is that if parents have money to buy services, there are still no services to buy, so we need to build a system,'' she said.

[..] The report's findings were based on four focus groups consisting of 25 to 30 community volunteers, who met at least five times during the year to discuss child care in Canada.

The focus groups included representatives from the child-care community, government, media, business and non-profit groups.