The Child Care for Working Families Act would ensure high-quality, affordable child care for working families across the country
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin, a member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, introduced legislation to ensure affordable, high-quality child care for working middle class families and those living paycheck to paycheck. The Child Care for Working Families Act, led by Senators Patty Murray (D-WA), Bob Casey (D-PA) and Mazie Hirono (D-HI), would address the current early learning and care crisis by ensuring that no family under 150 percent of state median income pays more than seven percent of their income on child care.
“For working parents in Wisconsin struggling to get ahead, high-quality, affordable child care is out of reach for too many,” said Senator Baldwin. “Our hardworking Wisconsin families deserve a better deal. I’m proud to help introduce this legislation that will help ensure more families have access to affordable child care and lift them out of poverty.”
The Child Care for Working Families Act would jumpstart our economy by creating 770,000 new child care jobs and allowing 1.6 million parents, primarily mothers, to go back to work. It would also lift one million families out of poverty. Families would pay their fair share for care on a sliding scale, regardless of the number of children they have. Families under 75 percent of the state median income will not have to pay anything at all.
The bill would also support universal access to high-quality preschool programs for all 3- and 4-year olds. Finally, the bill would significantly improve compensation and training for the child care workforce to ensure that our nation’s teachers and caregivers have the support they need, as well as the children they are caring for, to thrive.
In addition to Senators Baldwin, Murray, Casey, and Hirono, the bill is also cosponsored by Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Ben Cardin (D-MD), Chris Coons (D-DE), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Kamala Harris (D-CA), Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Ed Markey (D-MA), Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Chris Murphy (D-CT), Gary Peters (D-MI), Jack Reed (D-RI), Jacky Rosen (D-NV), Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Brian Schatz (D-HI), Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Tina Smith (D-MN), Tom Udall (D-NM), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Ron Wyden (D-OR).
Representatives Bobby Scott (D-VA) and Gregorio Kilili Camacho Sablan (I-MP) introduced House companion legislation with 98 cosponsors.
More information about the legislation is available here.
The full text of the legislation is available here.