NEWS
07/20/2017 08:53 EDT | Updated 07/20/2017 14:02 EDT

University of Toronto professor to lead Ontario's child-care affordability study

TORONTO — The provincial government is asking a Toronto academic to lead a new study on child-care affordability in Ontario and suggest ways to make it more accessible for families.

Gordon Cleveland is an economics professor at the University of Toronto who has published various studies on child-care costs, demand, services, financing, wages and quality.

In a statement Thursday, the provincial government says Cleveland will provide policy recommendations, including ways to improve access to child-care subsidies.

Cleveland's review, which is expected to be complete by the end of February, is part of Queen's Park plan to increase child-care capacity for kids under the age of four.

The province announced in this year's budget that it earmarked $200 million to fund 16,000 new child-care subsidies and 8,000 new spaces. Another $1.6 million in funding was announced last month to build 45,000 new licensed spaces.

Research from the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives says that several Greater Toronto Area cities have the highest child-care fees in the country, with Toronto topping the list with a median fee of $1,649 a month for infants.