Government increases spending for health care and education, writes Effie Triantafilopoulos

OPINION Apr 25, 2019 by Effie Triantafilopoulos Burlington Post

People who live in Oakville North-Burlington witness firsthand the tremendous growth in our thriving community, with many families and their young children.

Our community is full of hard-working people who expect their government to protect what matters most — important services such as health, education and child care.

Constituents tell me they often have a hard time making ends meet, that after monthly expenses many are still struggling to pay for things like affordable child care. As well, they have heard claims that the government is reducing spending on health care and education. These claims are simply not true.

Our government has, in fact, increased spending for both health and education in this year’s budget. Health spending will go up $1.3 billion, and education spending is up $700 million — both just this year.

Health spending will rise $3.1 billion over three years, investing in the front lines of our publicly funded health system. Ontario hospitals, mental health and addictions, long-term care, and home care and community care. These investments will help to end hallway health care.

Education spending will include building the new school our government announced it will fund in northeast Oakville — after years of delays by the past government.

The budget also brought some much-needed relief to parents and families across Ontario through a new child tax credit. The new Ontario Childcare Access and Relief from Expenses (CARE) tax credit would help over 300,000 Ontario parents and families claim 75 per cent of their eligible child-care expenses, including care in centres, homes and camps.

The CARE tax credit would increase the existing child-care expense deduction and focus benefits on low- and middle-income families. Families could receive up to $6,000 for each child under seven years of age, up to $3,750 for each child between the ages of seven and 16, and up to $8,250 for a child with a severe disability.

As well, our government will spend $1 billion over the next five years to create up to 30,000 new child-care spaces in schools.

We are committed to protecting what matters most for Ontarians — high-quality, publicly funded services that people expect and deserve.

Effie Triantafilopoulos is the MPP for Oakville North-Burlington.

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