Strengthening Child Care Support for Working Families
WASHINGTON, D.C., September 16, 2014
Continuing its efforts to support working families, the House passed a bipartisan, bicameral agreement to reform and reauthorize the Child Care and Development Block Grant program. A vital lifeline for parents working or pursuing an education, the program helps provide low-income families access to safe, quality child care. The bill passed last night includes important reforms that are long overdue:
The measure, also known as the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) program, has not been reauthorized since 1996. Provisions in the revamped bill, which lasts through fiscal 2020, would require child care providers receiving the grants to undergo annual inspections and comply with local health, safety and fire standards.
"The critical updates in the program will give Americans better support that they need," said Rep. Bobby Scott (D-Va.). House Education and the Workforce Committee Chairman John Kline (R-Minn.), a key negotiator of the bill, said it would provide critical assistance for low-income parents. "It is a vital safety net for moms and dads trying to lift their families out of poverty," Kline said.
The revised measure is expected to pass the Senate easily. (The Hill, “House passes revamped child care block grant bill,” 9/15/2014)
While this is an important step in a broader effort to help struggling families, more needs to be done. As Speaker Boehner noted following last night’s vote, “I hope the successful outcome we’ve seen here today will encourage Senate Democrats to take another look at the dozens of jobs bills they’re sitting on so we can do even more to address the needs of working families.”
To learn more about the legislation, click here.
To watch Chairman Kline speaking in support of the bill, click here.