Here’s the truth about child care:
- Underpaid working parents can barely afford child care
- Underpaid child care workers can’t survive on their low pay
That’s not all. Low wages lead to high turnover, limited training, and a system of early learning and care in the United States that doesn’t work for parents, teachers, or children.
Something has to change. And something is.
Child care workers and parents across the country are joining together to right this wrong.
Along with all underpaid workers in cities across the country, we are fighting for $15 an hour and union rights so we can support our families, provide the best care possible, and build a child care system that works for all families.
The way things are now is pretty crazy. Most would agree that educating young children is one of the most important things our country can do. And studies show that better wages for child care workers means quality care for children. In fact: we get a return of $7-$10 for every dollar invested in early care. With a return that high, you’d think we’d invest more. We don’t. Not even close. We expect skilled teachers to lay the foundation for children’s lifelong learning and success, yet those workers are paid a median wage of $9.38 per hour. That’s a whole lot less than, say, the guy who writes the jingle for a soap commercial or the woman turning the letters on the game show. And that…is crazy.
Even worse: In 2012, 46% of child care workers were a member of a family receiving public assistance.
That’s why increased child care funding must be a national priority. We can’t wait for someone to make it happen. Working parents and their children can’t wait for access to quality care. Our landlords can’t wait for the rent, and we can only push off the electric bill for so long. We can’t wait. We’re making it happen. Child care workers are coming together and joining parents and other workers across the country to fight for $15 and quality, affordable child care. We’re standing together to demand more for everyone who works hard but doesn’t make enough to get by.