We asked, and YOU delivered!
In our previous blog post, Kentucky Youth Advocates asked our community partners to “remain an active voice for Kentucky’s kids” by calling on our congressmen in Washington, D.C. to support the federal Child Care Development Block Grant (CCDBG). Your efforts were not in vain. In fact, our collective voice secured an additional $550 million dollars in federal CCDBG allocations! Kentucky will receive over $10 million of that investment. We march onward in our goal to create and sustain high quality, affordable child care for all children.
But the job is not yet finished. Now our leaders in Frankfort must decide how that $10 million investment will be used. This is a critical step. We must ensure that our hard-won federal dollars are used in a way that produces results for local economies, child care workers, parents, and children. Our commonwealth used a previous influx of CCDBG monies well in 2018. That wise use of federal money helped advocates make the case for this year’s increase. The moral of this story is that Kentucky’s wise use of federal money meant more federal investment dollars for us in the long run.
While we have made great progress, there is still work to do. Only 10.8% of potentially eligible children are served by a child care center nationwide. Kentucky’s child care centers, like many throughout the nation, are still beset by low staff wages and high teacher turnover, and half of our citizens live in a child care desert. It is difficult to keep a high-quality childcare center in business, and nearly impossible without federal and state investments.
Investments in child care provide our children – our commonwealth’s greatest resource – with a strong start in life. Child care investments equally provide the infrastructure for a robust, stable statewide economy for Kentucky’s workers.
So again, we turn to you, our community partners. Just as you did with our leaders in D.C., we ask you to keep access to high quality, affordable child care on the minds of our leaders in Frankfort. We need YOU to advocate for childcare in this year’s state budget!
Here are ways you can advocate:
- Remind your state Senator and Representative how important it is to Kentucky that our federal CCDBG dollars are used wisely,
- Share that investment in high quality child care gives our children a better shot at a higher quality of life now and in their futures,
- Make it clear that investment in child care is an investment in our commonwealth’s economic development, especially knowing that with stable childcare parents can go to work knowing their children are safe and learning,
- Show them the obstacles that exist in child care today for Kentucky, and
- Lead them to a future vision of our commonwealth with more successful children, security for working parents, and an increased economic vitality.
We will be alongside you as you advocate for state investment in child care, marching along to a better future for us all.
Learn more about the Blueprint for Kentucky’s Children priority to increase childcare supports.