Take Action! Write Letter to the Editor asking state legislators to invest in child care subsidies
When parents know their children are in safe, reliable child care, they can focus on their jobs or on the educational opportunities that will lead to employment. Yet, the high cost of child care places quality care out of reach for many middle and low income families. Programs that support parents’ ability to work, like child care subsidies, provide a path to economic stability for families, in turn leading to thriving communities.
Child care costs represent the largest expense in a monthly budget for many North Carolina families, often forcing parents to choose between leaving their children in inadequate and potentially unsafe care environments, missing school or work, or using money that they need for food or housing on child care. Child care subsidies temper these costs and allow families to work or attend school while their children receive high-quality care. When families are working, they not only are better able to provide for their families, but also contribute to North Carolina’s overall economy.
Unfortunately, funding levels have not kept pace with the need. The federal government provides the majority of funding for North Carolina’s child care subsidies, but North Carolina commits only the minimum amount required by the federal government and hasn’t expanded state funding for child care subsidies in recent years. There are currently 34,000 eligible children who are unable to access child care subsidies due to the lack of adequate investment—and waiting lists are perpetually this high or higher.
And when the recent government shutdown disrupted federal funding for child care subsidies, North Carolina prematurely informed local county departments of social services that funding would be stopped, forcing counties to make decisions about whether to continue financing this important program. When our working families needed it most, North Carolina did not step up to fill the gap in the services that are vital for thousands of children and families each year.
It’s time for North Carolina to invest in its future. Write a letter to the editor of your local paper asking state legislators to do their part and invest adequately in child care subsidies for North Carolina’s working families.
Use the on-line form below to submit your LTE. If you would like to receive periodic updates about different topics to write letters to the editor about, contact firstname.lastname@example.org .
Make sure that your letter lets legislators and readers know that child care subsidies:
- Help parents afford the high cost of child care, which represents the largest monthly expenditure for many families
- Allow parents in middle and low income families to remain focused and present at work or school while their children receive safe, high-quality child care
- Support local economies, particularly in rural communities like those in eastern North Carolina where child care is an important source of stable jobs
- Are threatened by disruptions in federal funding streams such as the government shutdown and Congress’ recent failure to reauthorize certain block grants (TANF, CCDBG) beyond September 30
- Need their support through greater investment at the state level
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Letter to the Editor
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