Harper Highlights the Universal Child Care Benefit
- Keeping taxes low and putting more money in the pockets of hard-working Canadian families has been a key priority for Prime Minister Stephen Harper.
- Among other things, Prime Minister Stephen Harper has:
- Reduced the GST from 7 per cent to 6 per cent to 5 per cent;
- Introduced the Family Tax Cut, which allows individuals to split up to $2000 per year with their spouse to reduce the overall family tax burden;
- Introduced the Tax-Free Savings Account and increased the contribution limit to $10,000 per year; and
- Provided tax relief for parents who put their children in arts and sports programs.
- As a result of these and other actions taken by Prime Minister Stephen Harper since 2006:
- Canadian families and individuals are now receiving $37 billion in annual tax relief and increased benefits; and
- A typical family of four is receiving up to $6,600 in annual tax relief and enhanced benefits.
- Canadians at all income levels are benefitting from the tax relief introduced by Prime Minister Stephen Harper, with low- and middle-income Canadians receiving proportionately greater relief.
- More than 1 million low-income Canadians have been removed from the tax rolls altogether.
- This significant tax relief is underpinned by Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s belief that families, not bureaucrats, know best how to spend their own money.
- Prime Minister Stephen Harper understands that child care decisions are best left in the hands of the real experts: mom and dad. In 2006, Canadians elected Prime Minister Stephen Harper on a plan to establish the Universal Child Care Benefit – a $100-per-month-benefit for every child under the age of 6. This benefit supported 1.7 million families.
- Prime Minister Stephen Harper delivered on this promise so that Canadian families had the support they needed to make the choices that were right for them and their children.
- This year, the Prime Minister expanded the UCCB, raising it to $160-per-month for each child under 6, and extending it to all parents with children ages 6 through 17.
- This means that families are receiving almost $2,000 per year for each child under 6 and $720 per year for each child aged 6 through 17.
- All families with children – nearly 4 million – are receiving UCCB benefits.
- In addition, Prime Minister Stephen Harper raised the Child Care Expense Deduction by $1,000 – i.e., to $8,000 from $7,000 per child under age seven, to $5,000 from $4,000 for each child aged seven through 16 (and for infirm children over age 16), and to $11,000 from $10,000 for children who are eligible for the Disability Tax Credit.
- The upshot is Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s plan benefits all families and recognizes the different circumstances and childcare choices that families make.
- Justin and Thomas Mulcair have different plans.
- Justin would take away the $160-per-month benefit from hard-working Canadian families and replace it with a reckless, complicated and costly alternative that would leave some families worse off. Justin doesn’t think it’s “fair” to help every family.
- Mulcair’s NDP would establish a one-size-fits-all, union-run bureaucratic daycare scheme that ignores the individual circumstances and preferences of millions of Canadian families. Thomas Mulcair hasn’t explained to Canadians how he plans to pay for his massively expensive scheme.
- Thomas Mulcair’s scheme will also be phased-in over 8 years and requires the provinces to sign-on and pay 40 per cent of the costs. In short, it’s a scheme that will never get off the ground.
- The choice is clear:
- Prime Minister Stephen Harper will continue to put money back in the pockets of every Canadian family so they can spend it on their childcare priorities,
- Justin and Thomas Mulcair will raise taxes on Canadian families and take benefits away to finance their dangerous, high-tax, high debt agendas.
- Only Prime Minister Stephen Harper will continue to put money back in the pockets of every single Canadian family so they can spend it on their own child care priorities – because mom and dad know best.
 According to the 2011 National Household Survey, of those families who use childcare services for their children aged 4 and younger, nearly 60 per cent reported using non-institutional (home daycares and private arrangements) services.