Letter – Axing Parent Link programs a terrible place to make cuts

I feel I must use my voice regarding cuts to programs from the [provincial] UCP government in the name of cutting the deficit.

I believe these particular cuts, specifically closing all Alberta Parent Link Centres, is short sighted.

Parent Link Centres have been offering parents, babies and preschoolers many services and resources, including special events developmental screens, referrals, toy libraries clothing banks, parent programs and education programs.

The social aspect is also very important as parents can sometimes feel very isolated, so having other parents to talk to, can often be very positive support for families.

The programs help guide children and families in their journeys toward positive outcomes.

I have always known the benefits of early childhood programs, having worked for 30 years in programs in Alberta with children and families.

I have worked with special needs programs and understand the importance of early intervention and referrals for children to services and access to program unit funding programs, if needed. I understand the deficit needs to be paid down, but I understand this is not where cuts should be made.

If the government is aware of the Perry Preschool Project longitudinal student in the United States, they would realize the research shows how money spent in early childhood reaps large benefits in the future.

I hope parents and community members let the UCP government know how they feel about this.

Call Lesser Slave Lake MLA Pat Rehn at his Slave Lake office at [1-825] 219-1000 or his legislative office at [1-780] 638-2818.

Peggy McCarthy,
High Prairie, AB.

Editor’s note: Interested parties may call Rehn toll-free at 310-0000.

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