Arlington, VA – According to a report released today by the National Association of Child Care Resource & Referral Agencies (NACCRRA), Every Child Matters Education Fund and Voices for America’s Children, the majority of states continue to make deep budget cuts in key areas that support children’s development, health and safety. State Budget Cuts: America’s Kids Pay the Price, lists state-by-state cuts to programs affecting children, including public health, early education, child care, K-12, and programs for children with special needs.
Based on a survey of Child Care Resource and Referral agencies (CCR&Rs), the report shows that FY 2011 budget cuts drastically affected children and family services within their states. Additional information was contributed by members of Every Child Matters and Voices for America’s Children.
“Children are our most vulnerable citizens, yet states are cutting critical programs that are needed to ensure their healthy development and well-being,” said NACCRRA Executive Director Linda K. Smith. “As Congress debates spending cuts for FY 2012, and as the Budget Super Committee drafts deficit reduction recommendations for the next 10 years, it is essential that our nation’s children are protected and that key initiatives with a direct effect on the economy, such as child care assistance, are fully funded and not diminished.”
The budget deal to increase the debt ceiling last August required additional cuts in the federal budget. Federal programs for the fiscal year that began October 1 are operating under a Continuing Resolution through November 18. The Budget Super Committee’s recommendations for the decade are due November 23.
“There is no doubt that difficult decisions need to be made this fall,” said Smith. “But, as a nation we have an obligation to protect our children. Child care is critical for parents to work. And, working parents are essential to strengthening the economy. With family budgets already strained, we just can’t afford to exacerbate the impact on young working families.”
To make children’s interests a priority and support future economic growth, Congress should promote tax fairness including eradicating tax loopholes and provide additional aid to states for children’s health care and education. Additionally, Congress should adopt an Invest-in-Kids Agenda that fully funds Head Start, child abuse prevention and treatment, guarantees health insurance for every child and provides access to affordable child care for working families.
To read the complete report, please visit http://www.naccrra.org/publications/naccrra-publications/
NACCRRA, the National Association of Child Care Resource & Referral Agencies, is our nation's leading voice for child care. We work with more than 600 state and local Child Care Resource and Referral agencies to ensure that families in every local community have access to high quality, affordable childcare. To achieve our mission, we lead projects that increase the quality and availability of child care professionals, undertake research, and advocate child care policies that positively impact the lives of children and families. To learn more about NACCRRA and how you can join us in ensuring access to high-quality child care for all families, visit us at www.naccrra.org.