September 27 – Childcare Hearing. We Need You!

Exasperated by childcare policy in D.C.? Now’s your time to speak out. We need you!

On September 27th, at 10:00 am, the D.C. Council will hold a hearing to discuss the BEGIN Act (Bolstering Early Growth Investment Amendment Act of 2017) and the Infant and Toddler Development Health Services Act — both of which would expand access to childcare in D.C.

We need parents, caregivers, childcare providers, advocates, and other stakeholders to come out and testify about their own struggles with childcare policy in the nation’s capital. We also need people who don’t want to testify to come out and show the D.C. Council that support for universal childcare in D.C. is widespread.

RSVP for the hearing HERE.

Thank you for all you do to help children and families in our nation’s capital. We look forward to seeing you later this month at the Wilson Building (a.k.a. City Hall)!

Want to testify but can’t make the hearing? Submit your written testimony directly to MomsRising and we’ll make sure your story gets to the D.C. Council on the day of the hearing. Need some inspiration for what to write? Check out (and borrow freely from) our testimony template, here. (The pink areas are essentially fill–in-the-blanks where you can add your own details and tell your own stories.)

Call for your stories: D.C. parents, tell us what it’s like!

MomsRising, a national organization advancing the rights of young children and their families (and our incredible partner in pushing toward universal childcare in D.C.) is collecting stories from parents and caretakers about their experiences securing (and providing) childcare in D.C.

Feel like sharing?

Here’s what MomsRising is looking for:

To build momentum for affordable, high-quality childcare in D.C., we need childcare providers and families to share their experiences in order to show our local leaders that childcare is a priority for their constituents.
– Are you struggling to afford high-quality childcare?
– Are you a care provider who isn’t earning a livable wage? Or struggling to serve families in the community?
– Did you have trouble finding a childcare program that works for your family?
– Did someone in your family have to quit their job because childcare was too expensive or not available?
Personal experiences are powerful and can make a HUGE difference in helping elected leaders understand why supporting access to high-quality, affordable childcare is so important. So the good the bad – we want to hear it! Just fill out this quick form and we’ll make sure your experience is shared with local leaders:
http://action.momsrising.org/survey/ChildcareStory/?source=UCDC

The D.C. Council is now considering multiple pieces of legislation to expand childcare options in D.C., but the fight is just beginning.

We, as parents and caregivers, need to share our stories and our struggles with securing care for our children, and keeping our families afloat financially, to inform real policy that is bold enough to effect change.

So, please share if you can. And tell your friends. The more stories we have, the more impact we can have on D.C. Councilmembers as they consider options on childcare policy during the legislative session this fall.

Playdates for Affordable Childcare: D.C. Families, Make Your Voices Heard!

Dear D.C. parents,

As we all know, D.C. has one of the most unaffordable childcare systems in the nation. Let’s work together to change that!

The D.C. Council is considering groundbreaking legislation to expand access to childcare in D.C. We need your input on the bill and the state of childcare in D.C.!

Please review the bill (or the summary, below) and join us for one of the Universal Childcare Now – D.C. Coalition’s upcoming policy playdates. (RSVP Here!)

At the roundtables, you will get a breakdown of upcoming childcare legislation and have the opportunity to write letters to Councilmembers about your childcare needs in D.C. We will also be painting onesies to send to members.

So let’s make it a playdate! Tell us what you think in person — and bring your children. We’ll have food, juice boxes, kid-friendly space, and lots to talk about.

Roundtable One:
August 5th, 10:30 am-12:00 pm, Tenley-Friendship Neighborhood Library
RSVP

Roundtable Two:
August 14, 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm, Petworth Library
RSVP

Roundtable Three:
August 26th, 10:30 am-12:00 pm, Anacostia Library
RSVP

Roundtable Four:
Sept 2nd, 10:30 am-12:00 pm, Shaw Library
RSVP

Roundtable Five:
Sept 9th, 10:30 am-12:00 pm, Lamond-Riggs Library
RSVP

Summary of the Bolstering Early Growth Investment Amendment Act:

  • Increase childcare subsidy payments for providers
  • Establish a program that allows child development facilities to share services
  • Establish an Infant and Toddler Educator Compensation Task Force
  • Expand the duties of the Early Childhood Development Coordinating Council to review reimbursement rates, expand child development resources in low-income communities, and reassess existing facility regulations
  • Establish an Office of Early Childhood Development to operate the facility licensing process for child development providers, and offer guidance surrounding regulations, financing, and training
  • Provide tax incentives for property owners to dedicate space to child development facilities
  • Establish a grant program to help providers enhance their facilities

We’re Back (although we never really left)!

It’s been nearly two years since we asked D.C. parents to fill out surveys about their childcare experiences. More than 600 people answered. The overwhelming majority of D.C. parents — across quadrants and cultures and income levels — believe the childcare system in this city is broken.

Finally, we have a shot at legislative action.

Members of the Universal Childcare Now – D.C. Coalition have worked diligently over the last two years to build support for our cause. We’ve been featured in the news. We have given testimony at city hall. We’ve met with mayoral staff and members of the D.C. Council. We have mobilized and engaged parents, held meetings in libraries and coffee shops across the city, and bolstered a unified movement.

On June 27, Councilmember Robert White introduced the Bolstering Early Growth Investment Amendment Act of 2017 (or BEGIn Act), which would (in the Councilmember’s words) “drastically expand access to early childhood development programs for families across the District of Columbia.” Mayor Muriel Bowser, for her part, is promoting childcare expansion initiatives of her own. And back in January, Councilmember David Grosso introduced the “District of Columbia Child Development Facilities Expansion Amendment Act of 2017.”

There is real change going on in D.C.’s policy environment surrounding childcare. We’re gearing up to take advantage of our hard-won momentum and push hard for legislative and budgetary victories surrounding childcare access in the months going forward. Thank you for being a part of the movement. We’ll keep updating this page with legislative developments and calls for action.

Stay tuned!

ChildCare Policy Roundtables For Parents

Our Universal ChildCare Coalition just wrapped up surveying over 500 parents in the district, and for our next step, we will be hosting policy roundtables with parents throughout the city. If you would like to attend one of those roundtables, you can RSVP HERE.

 At the roundtables, parents will have the opporunity to voice their concerns and offer feedback on ways we can move toward universal childcare. All questions at the roundtables were produced by experts from the National Women’s Law Center and we will have a legal team from Georgetown Law present. We have also invited select Councilmembers and staff.
Again to RSVP, click HERE.

Who We Are

We are a coalition of parents, directors of ChildCare centers,  policy experts from the National Women’s Law Center and  ChildCare Aware and legal advocates from Georgetown Law School are starting a campaign to get DC on a pathway towards universal childcare coverage. As of now, childcare is too expensive for most parents and we are organizing to change that. Stay tuned for more updates.

 

If you are a parent and would like to take our ChildCare Survey, Click Here