Important child care implications of budget choices

Even in difficult fiscal times with hard budget decisions, we must consider the societal implications of these decisions.

Anna Sewell
Anna Sewell

Data consistently show that investing in child care benefits society by providing early education for children and relieving working parents of serious financial strains of child care costs.

This frees up household income, which can help to stimulate the economy through spending and investment. Also, the additional time parents are able to spend working increases the productivity of our nation’s workforce, as well as individuals’ income.

This critical support to families and the economy is part of assistance that could be dropped in the coming days for over 300,000 children and their families under HR1, which would make changes in programs under a continuing resolution that expires next Friday, March 4.

HR1 would cut funds for federal programs by over $60 billion. More specifically, the bill would cut $1 billion from Head Start and $39 million from the Child Care and Development Block Grant, which funds Iowa’s Child Care Assistance program.

For Head Start, the cuts would close 16,000 classrooms and cut jobs for 55,000 teachers, assistants and related staff. This would be the largest cut in Head Start’s 45-year history.

Alternative means for lessening the deficit could be for Congress to pursue a balanced approach of spending cuts and necessary revenue increases, while continuing to make investments in education.

Posted by Anna Sewell, IPP intern

Author: iowapolicypoints

The Iowa Policy Project is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that provides research and analysis to engage Iowans in state policy decisions. We focus on tax and busget issues, the Iowa economy, and energy and environmental policy. By providing a foundation of fact-based, objective research and engaging the public in an informed discussion of policy alternatives, IPP advances effective, accountable and fair government.

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