Over the past 18 months, Child Care Aware® of America staff and Public Policy committee has surveyed, interviewed, and conducted focus groups with parents of young children, grandparents, national child advocacy organizations, and state and local Child Care Resource and Referral (CCR&R) agencies. During those conversations it was underscored that child care is an essential building block of any community and that investments in child care are investments in our children, our economy, and our future.
A year ago this month, Congress passed the first reauthorization of the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) in nearly 20 years, with strong bipartisan support. While this was a significant advancement in the child care system, the resounding message was more work must be done toward an ultimate vision of ensuring high-quality child care for all working families.
It has been an incredible experience these past several months to work with CCAoA’s Public Policy Committee, staff, and advocates across the nation to build the next chapter for child care policy, focusing on the following priorities:
- Affordable Quality Child Care for Families;
- Equitable Child Care for Underserved Populations;
- Healthy Child Care;
- Professional Development and Compensation;
- CCDBG Implementation.
In the most recent State of the Union, the President emphasized the need for all families with young children to have access to affordable, high-quality child care. “It’s not a nice-to-have. It’s a must-have.” Adopting the proposals in this agenda would be a significant step toward that vision.
To see Child Care Aware® of America’s Policy Agenda and Agenda in Brief visit: http://usa.childcareaware.org/policyagenda.