News Releases

News Release - Manitoba

December 7, 2020


The Manitoba government is establishing a new parent advisory committee that will guide public engagement and provide advice to the province on how to ensure child-care services meet the diverse needs of parents and families and protect Manitobans, Families Minister Heather Stefanson announced today.
“The most important decision-makers when it comes to child care are Manitoba parents, who know what their children and families need,” said Stefanson. “This new parent advisory committee will ensure they have a strong voice as we build a renewed child-care system that works better in protecting more Manitoba families and offering more choices in child care. We must find solutions that meet the needs of under-served communities while still ensuring affordability and sustainability for the future.” 
Earlier this year, the province received a draft report from KPMG outlining the findings of its review of the funding model in child care. Connecting to this work, the parent advisory committee will have two primary responsibilities: to help lead public engagement with parents and caregivers on their priorities and needs for child care, and to provide feedback to the government on how to move forward with broader plans to renew Manitoba’s child-care sector. This work will help in developing an action plan on child care to be released in the spring of 2021, the minister noted. 
The parent advisory committee will be chaired by Janice Morley-Lecomte, legislative assistant to the minister of families. It will include parents from across the province with children up to the age of 12, representing diverse families and their unique child-care needs, as well as other expert voices. Members include:
Laura Matlashewski (Winnipeg), manager of Total Rewards at Manitoba Public Insurance, parent of three children;
Kathryn Lee (Winnipeg), tax specialist at MNP LLP, parent of one child;
Ron Fillion (Winnipeg), teacher, parent of two adult children;
Erin Furgala (Camp Morton), principal at Riverton Collegiate, parent of three children; 
Donald Lepp (Gonor), manager of corporate projects at Canada Post, parent of two children;
Kevin Harold (Oakbank), managing partner at Crescent Financial Group, parent of one child;
Keesy Rodewald (Emerson), community relations co-ordinator at Access Credit Union, parent of four children; 
Karen Moore (Birch River), rancher and grain farmer, foster parent of three children; 
Karla Dane (Brandon), partner at law firm Meighan Haddad, parent of two children; and
Kirsten Kozub (Thompson), storekeeper with Manitoba Hydro, parent of three children. 
Over the coming months, with the input of the parent advisory committee, parents from across Manitoba and other key stakeholders, the province will announce more key initiatives to support a stronger child-care sector, which will in turn provide further protection for Manitobans, the minister said.
“When parents have reliable, affordable and quality child care, they can pursue opportunities in employment, education and other areas that strengthen families, strengthen communities and strengthen our economy,” said Stefanson. “We need to recognize the current system is not meeting the diverse needs of Manitoba’s families, and the creation of the parent advisory committee is the next step in finding solutions.”
Public engagements on child care are expected to begin in 2021, Stefanson added. More information will be posted at EngageMB at
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