Two U.S. senators push a more modest proposal on child care
Amid the deepening child care crisis, two Democratic senators, Patty Murray of Washington and Tim Kaine of Virginia, are joining forces to push a scaled-back version of the ambitious child care program that was part of President Joe Biden’s “Build Back Better” legislation, as HuffPost reported.
Under the proposal from Murray and Kaine, the government would invest between $150 billion and $200 billion to rescue the struggling sector over 10 years, far less than the Biden plan, which failed to pass in the Senate. The bulk of the newly proposed spending would go through the Child Care Development and Block Grant, which states use to subsidize child care for low- and sometimes middle-income families. The proposal would triple the block grant’s usual funding, according to a new analysis from the Center on Law and Social Policy, allowing it to reach at least 1 million more kids while also setting aside some funds for beleaguered providers.
“The child care sector is on the brink of collapse and we have to act now to save it ― or families across the country will pay the price,” Murray said in a statement, HuffPost reported. “I have spoken to so many moms and parents who had to quit their jobs entirely because they either couldn’t afford child care or they couldn’t find it, and to child care workers who are being paid poverty wages and can’t make ends meet ― it’s clear, this is an urgent crisis and it’s putting a huge strain on our entire economy.”