Washington, DC- With a bill on the Senate floor, U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) today called for passage of a bipartisan measure that helps nearly 60,000 Pennsylvania families afford child care each month. The historically bipartisan legislation, the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG), helps parents work and drive the economy while affording child care. Senator Casey has included provisions in the bill that will strengthen standards and inspections on child care providers and make it easier for children to qualify for one continuous year of child care.
“This legislation is about setting children on a path to success from their earliest years,” Senator Casey said. “Across the nation, millions of families struggle with the enormous cost of child care, which is often the single largest item in a family’s budget, exceeding even the cost of housing. Helping parents access child care while they work or go to school allows them to be competitive in the job market, boosts the economy and strengthens families.”
Each month in Pennsylvania, CCDBG funding supports approximately 95,600 children, and over 1.5 million children nation-wide. The program helps parents, giving them access to child care so that the parents can work to support their families, yet CCDBG has not been reauthorized since 1996.
Children who qualify for a subsidy will receive a year of care before their eligibility is re-determined, promoting stability and continuity for the entire family and encouraging the child to develop strong relationships with his or her teachers and peers in child care. This is especially important for Pennsylvania’s children, as the state recently reduced its “redetermination period” from 12 months to 6 months.