Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley joined the Care That Works coalition today to uplift the demand for a universal, equitable, and flexible child care system that benefits working families, low-income communities, and communities of color across the Commonwealth. Until we have a universal child care system, options for nonstandard schedules (early morning, late evening, overnight, and weekend) remain scarce. The Care That Works’ Pilot is seeking to bridge the gap for families in need of child care for nonstandard schedules (beyond 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.).
“This pilot takes critical and necessary steps in creating flexible solutions that ease child care challenges for families during the pandemic. As we continue working to build a just and equitable recovery, childcare must remain front and center. I’ll continue fighting to ensure any bold reconciliation package does just that,” said Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley (MA-07).
During the pandemic, Massachusetts saw hundreds of licensed family child care providers and center-based providers close permanently with little to no relief available until it was too late. But even before the pandemic, parents were struggling to find affordable, accessible child care. The lack of affordable, professional child care options for nonstandard schedules is a major gap in the system that hurts parents who work or seek work with those schedules.
“We need resources like the Care That Works pilot. As caregivers, we try to provide what we can – but without the assistance of our legislators, labor, and community allies – working families face challenges finding child care that works for them,” said Maria Estevez, Maria Estevez’s Family Child Care. “The pandemic has only exposed the inequalities working families bear, but with the pilot, we are working towards a more just recovery.”