We are pleased to share a new resource created by CLASP, ZERO TO THREE, NWLC and partners that details why we need at least $450 billion in direct spending for child care and early learning. The American Rescue Plan and 2020 COVID-19 relief packages included critical investments of more than $50 billion in child care relief. These relief funds will help stabilize an otherwise collapsing child care sector, support parents and other caregivers’ ability to work and care for children, support children’s healthy development, and raise wages for the essential workers who care for and educate children every day.
While the American Rescue Plan provides robust relief, it was not designed to address the long-term structural flaws in our economy that made the pandemic so devastating for women of color and their families and harmed communities across the nation.
An equitable economic recovery effort, one that will not further exacerbate inequities by race and gender or further entrench occupational segregation and wage disparities, requires that Congress invest at LEAST $450 billion in direct spending for child care and early learning. This level of investment is supporting the President’s Build Back Better plan, reflected in the Congressional budget. The budget proposal includes: $250 billion over 10 years for child care $200 billion over 10 years for universal pre-kindergarten.