by Mary Ignatius, Parent Voices
Parent Voices, along with other child care advocates, is inspired by the bold and fearless $625 million budget ask to reinvest in child care, which was put forth by the Democratic members of the Legislative Women’s Caucus (LWC).
This ask is much more than a funding request; the LWC said to the media, the public, their colleagues in both houses and the Governor that they will no longer allow low-income mothers and children to be ignored.
After the devastating loss of $1 billion and 110,000 child care slots since 2008, this bold budget ask comes at a time when the members of Parent Voices have felt like the sacrifices, obstacles and struggles they have endured in accessing quality, affordable child care have been unseen.
Yesterday, our women leaders told the world: they see us.
They see the thousands of mothers and the children who are eligible for child care services and have been waiting for investments; they see the mothers who are able to work and go to school to achieve economic security because they have a child care subsidy but also recognize that one incident such as an unreliable car, an illness or the lack of paid sick days could upend the stability they have created; they see the predominantly female child care providers and teachers and the sacrifices they make on a daily basis to keep their businesses open after years of frozen reimbursement rates; and they see that access to child care and early learning opportunities must start at birth to ensure that children are successful in school and life.
Our next step is to convince the Legislature and the Governor to follow the Women’s Caucus’ lead and put families first. We are asking our community to sign a petition to show their support of this bold budget request.
We have 48 hours to collect as many signatures as we can so please sign our petition and share the link with your networks.
As the California economy begins its recovery, this $625 million budget ask will ensure that low-income mothers and their children can also participate in the recovery.