Taking action is easy! Enter your email address and zip code on the right to send your legislators an email supporting the Child C.A.R.E. Act.
New legislation was introduced in February to make child care more available, affordable, and of higher quality for low-income families across the country. Given how expensive and unavailable child care is today, and how important it is to allow parents to earn a living and children to be nurtured and educated, it is urgent for members of Congress to show their support for this bill while there is time for this issue to be considered as part of the federal budget for 2016.
What you need to know:
Child care is a necessity, not a luxury: Sixty percent of mothers with children under the age of 3 are in the workforce.
Child care is unaffordable for low- and middle-income families: The average cost of child care exceeds $10,000 a year, and in some states it’s as high as $17,000 a year.
Quality child care is critical to the rest of a child's life: Brain development is 80 percent complete by age 4.
Approximately two-thirds of the 7.5 million kids living at or below 200 percent of the federal poverty level are not cared for by their parents during the day.
Child care workers are underpaid. They are among the lowest-paid workers in America, earning an average of $9.50 a hour or roughly $19,000 a year.
What the bill does:
Helps to ensure that families with infants and toddlers living at or below 200 percent of the federal poverty level and in need of child care have access to high-quality care by the year 2021.
Improves current federal child care policy by providing sufficient funding to ensure that both parents and child care providers have the resources they need to support high-quality early care and learning for children under age 4.
Assists infant and toddler child care providers in improving the quality of their programs by strengthening the skills and competencies of their workers, raising wages of child care workers, and helping providers ensure that children receive comprehensive services by coordinating activities with other community service providers.
Encourages infant and toddler child care to be a strong component of a seamless continuum of quality early learning, starting with prenatal care and continuing into the early school years.
Could help nearly 1 million additional children under the age of 4 gain access to high-quality child care after 10 years.