My vote was for sale for the upcoming Canadian election. As a suburban working mother of three young boys, I understand it’s a pretty valuable vote, too.

My first priority was to simply vote against the Conservatives. As a working mom, child care is one of my number-one issues, and I’m still bitterly disappointed over the Universal Child Care Benefit plan which was neither Universal nor Child Care.

Tories say they want to put money in the hands of families to let them make their own choices. Well that’s all very well and good, if there are options out there for families to buy into. Unfortunately, in many neighbourhoods across the country that’s simply not the case. Waiting lists for licensed child care can be years long, and unregulated child care is unreliable at best. (Don’t get me wrong, it’s what I’ve been relying on all along, but I don’t believe it’s the best option.)

I’d have liked to vote Liberal, but they simply haven’t shown me that they care for my vote. What do the Liberals stand for in this election? I haven’t quite been able to figure that one out.

I’d considered voting Green. I love an underdog.

And then the NDP offered me $250 per child per month until my boys are 18 years of age. That’s when I sold my vote to the NDP. What closed the deal was when I read that the NDP is proposing a National Child Care Act, something that would try to make child care accessible and regulated – something I strongly believe in.

Do I believe the NDP solution is a plan that the whole nation can afford right now? Maybe not. Do I believe it’s a realistic plan? Not entirely sure. But I can see that rampant profiteering has just collapsed the American economy and maybe it’s time for a sea change. And I could put that extra cash to good use, staying home an extra day each week with my boys to make my life a little easier to balance.

6 Responses to How the NDP bought my vote

  1. Eric Jacksch
    Oct 09, 2008

    The NDP also proposed $400/month per child, but there’s a catch — it’s only for those with a family income of less than $38k. And guess whose pockets that money will come out of?

    Of course, since they also want to raise corporate taxes (thereby encouraging businesses to spend less money, hire fewer people, and perhaps even leave Canada), an increasing number of families would become eligible.

  2. Darin Cowan
    Nov 05, 2008

    I’m a big fan of “plan how you are going to support your family, and care for your children before you have them so the government doesn’t need to give you handouts.”

    Bearing the cost of raising children is the responsibility of the parents who have them, not the public at large. And while it benefits everyone to ensure that children aren’t starving in the streets, it isn’t fair to pay people to have children or allow them to squeeze of a brood while forcing the state to cover the costs of child care so mom and dad can both work and live a life of relative luxury.

    Now if we can just get that “senior citizens are exempt school taxes” repealed…

  3. Danielle
    Nov 05, 2008

    Yeah, Darin, you got me. I was so into this whole child-rearing scheme just for the profits. Didn’t work out quite like I planned, though. Even if the gov’t was forking over the kind of cash the NDP offered, it would take six years just to pay off the cost of our fertility treatments — that the gov’t ALSO doesn’t pay for. I guess I should have thought this one through a little more.

    *eyeball roll*

  4. Lynn H
    Nov 25, 2008

    What is the digital or technology part of this story?

  5. Danielle Donders
    Nov 25, 2008

    Hi Lynn, thanks for your comment. I tried to e-mail you a response, but your address is not valid. This post was written before we narrowed the focus of my column to life with technology. Chalk it up to growing pains!

  6. vickiz
    Nov 25, 2008

    Clarification appreciated. You’ve got a motherlode of topics to mine just discussing technology’s effects on families.

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