REP. REED HIGHLIGHTS IMPORTANCE OF CHILD CARE IN AMERICA; CALLS OUT NEW YORK’S HOLDING OF CHILD CARE FUNDING AS UNACCEPTABLE
Today, Rep. Tom Reed continued his efforts to highlight the critical role child care plays in our communities and economy, as well as the need for Congress to ensure child care providers and working families receive the full support they deserve.
During today’s Ways and Means Worker & Family Support Subcommittee hearing on childcare, Reed noted the serious consequences of New York State’s refusal to distribute significant portions of the federal grants to child care providers over the last three months. Reed also noted the serious logistical challenges child care facilities now face and the need for shared best practices.
Tom’s full remarks and witness questions during the hearing can be found here.
Over the last week, Reed has also visited two child care providers in the region to discuss the acute issues local providers have encountered and the uncertainty Albany’s failure to disperse funds has created.
Andrea Bunn-Weaver, Director of the Rainbow Junction Educational Childcare facility commented on the issue, noting:
"Childcare, while a crucial part of a child’s early education journey, is easily forgotten about. It is easy to forget that we are a bridge or stepping stone for these children, starting at infancy and working up to the start of their educational careers at ‘the big schools’. It is critical that centers and providers have the resources available to them in order to make this time frame as successful, educational, memorable and of course as fun as possible.”
All of us at Rainbow Junction are extremely grateful that Congress is taking a closer look at the importance of childcare and funding availability for centers and providers. Something needs to be done to ensure that families and children across New York State, especially now during this time of uncertainty, as well as in the near future, have quality care options available to them. So many centers and providers have struggled, even prior to COVID-19, due to the lack of funding and resources available, so knowing that we have Congressman Reed and Congress in our corner gives us hope for the future, something we all need right now!”
Beth Starks, Founder and Executive Director of the Chautauqua Lake Child Care Center, also remarked on the situation, noting:
“We cannot look at supporting child care as a “subsidy”. It is truly an investment in economic development and infrastructure. We cannot rebuild our economy without an investment in something as critical as child care.
This issue to me is not political. It is very much bipartisan and I believe that we have to all come together to support children and families. In doing so, we support our economic infrastructure and the future of our state. If we aren’t making decisions based on what is best for our youngest citizens, then we are doing a disservice to our entire population.
I will always believe every challenge is an opportunity and we have the opportunity now to do the right thing for our current workforce and for our state's youngest citizens, our future.”
Beth’s testimony, which Reed submitted to the record, can be found here.