In 1997, Quebec adopted a policy providing universal pre-school daycare for five dollars per day. Comparing Quebec to the rest of Canada, we use 1996, 2001, and 2006 Canadian census data to determine the impact of this policy on couples’ strategies for combining employment and child care. We find that, in addition to increasing mothers’ labour force participation, the policy reduced the number of families in Quebec with a traditional division of labour, particularly for common-law couples. However, we also find that the policy does not increase the proportion of families with egalitarian work and child care arrangements.

Bibliographic Notes

The brief was prepared by Carmina Ravanera.