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Moving Child Care Forward Post-Election

November 11, 2016

An open letter from the National Women's Law Center, Child Care and Early Learning

 

November 10, 2016

 

Dear Fellow Advocates,

 

We share with you a deep concern with the messages that came out of this election, and with the current landscape.  We are all assessing what it means for all our work on behalf of women and their families.

 

In the House, there are now 238 Republicans and 193 Democrats, with 4 seats yet to be decided - two in Louisiana and two in California. In the Senate, there are now 51 Republicans and 48 Democrats, with 1 seat yet to be decided.  The Administration and Congress will be controlled by one party for at least the next two years.

In the midst of our challenges, there may be an opportunity to move forward for families and children. It is because of your tireless work that child care became a priority for both Presidential candidates. The first national ad released by now President-Elect Trump focused on the importance of child care to our nation’s children, parents, and economy.  Responding to the candidates’ focus on child care, and recognizing the importance of child care in the daily lives of families across the country, the media has increased coverage of the issue.

 

We now are eager to work with you and our national partners to build bipartisan support in the House and Senate for substantial investments in child care, an issue that has always been bipartisan.

 

It may be a difficult road ahead. But support for increased federal and state investment in child care and early education is high across the political, geographic, and demographic lines. In Ohio, two local ballot initiatives to expand Preschool Access also passed on Tuesday.

 

We can take advantage of that support to make gains that benefit children and families, even in a challenging environment.

 

We have made some progress across party lines in every Administration since Ronald Reagan was elected in 1980.  Working together with a shared message about the importance of high-quality child care to America’s families and the child care workers who make it possible, we can continue on this path.

 

All my best,

Helen Blank

Director of Child Care and Early Learning

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