Leak-free Cloth Diapering Systems Since 1991!

Understanding the Changes to Canada’s Parental Leave

Canada’s Changing Parental Leave

The federal government’s 2017 budget came with a big announcement for parents: an option to extend parental leave from 12 months to 18.

What exactly does it look like? Here are the details:

When does it take effect: the changes are expected to be in place by the end of 2017.

What is the change: currently parents can take EI (Employment Insurance) parental benefits for up to one year and receive 55 percent of their income up to a maximum of $543 a week. The new 18-month option comes with a lower income replacement rate of 33 percent up to a maximum of $362 per week.

Mothers can also choose to start their EI maternity benefits up to 12 weeks before their due date—expanded from the current standard of 8 weeks.

Find out what it takes to qualify for parental benefits here.

Of course, being a parent can be expensive. Lower benefits mean parents have to find a way to stretch their money even further.

Ways to save money as a new parent

Use cloth diapers: of course, we have to start with this one. Not only are cloth diapers a good option for the environment, cloth diapers can also save families money – even when you factor in the extra laundry.

Buy second-hand: look for a good consignment shop in your city, talk to friends and family, or look at online forums for second-hand items. Like cloth diapers, this is another way to help the environment and save money. Many items can go through a number of children without wearing out. Clothes, toys, baby gear such as bouncers, swings and even strollers can be purchased second-hand at a large savings.

Find a toy lending library: find out if there is a toy lending library in your area. In Ontario, most Ontario Early Years Centres offer this service. You can borrow toys, books, games and even some baby gear  – free of charge.

Look for free programming: many cities offer free services such as healthy baby clinics and lactation consultants through their public health units. Libraries often have programs for mom and baby, as do some shopping centers in bigger cities. Check and see if your local school boards have early literacy programs, and whether any of the community centers have free playgroups.

Say yes to hand-me-downs: if you are in a circle of friends or family with children, you will likely be offered clothes as their kids grow out of them. Say yes! Babies grow out of clothes so quickly, they rarely have time to wear them out. Parents who aren’t having any more children are happy to clear their house of the extra items, and love knowing it’s going to a good home.

Minimize: babies really don’t need that much stuff. Talk to other parents and find out what are the must-have items and what things are optional.

What ways do you save?

We’d love to hear the different ways you’ve saved or plan to save!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *