The government just announced that by 2012, French citizens would have a guaranteed right to child care (meaning parents will be in a position to go to court to force the government to deliver services if those aren’t readily available when needed). See the story in Le Monde, here (en français).
What’s particularly interesting is the government’s insistence on diversity in the kinds of services to be offered. Public daycare, private daycare, at-work daycare, at-home care, even trying to facilitate telecommuting for working parents so they can keep their babies with them at home, nothing seems off the table.
Pour moi, le droit opposable, ce n’est pas simplement la crèche publique : cela peut être la crèche associative, la crèche d’entreprise, l’emploi à la personne, l’emploi à domicile”, affirmait [Nicolas] Sarkozy pendant la campagne.
Memo to those who want a federally-funded, national public daycare system here in order to bring Canada closer to the “European” model: Europeans aren’t as interested in universal public systems as you think they should be…by