Legislative Update and Action Needed!
Child Care Assistance in Jeopardy
Several members of WSA testified in the past week against the Governor’s proposal to limit access to the Working Connections Child Care program only to those families on TANF. One parent eloquently told lawmakers that she had no choice but to quit her job helping disabled adults. Instead, she had to go onto TANF so that she could continue to afford food and housing. She pointed out how wrongheaded the Governor proposal is—the state can continue to provide a small subsidy to help her pay for child care as currently does, or under the Governor’s proposal she can quit her job and have the state pick up her full child care expenses, pay a cash grant, provide her with medical care, and help her with food assistance. By limiting access to Working Connections Child Care to only families on TANF the state will end paying four times the amount they could have paid then if they continued to support her while she was working. In short, the Governor’s proposal for Working Connections Child Care to will make it harder for low wage workers to get and keep a job and creates a perverse incentive that encourages families to go on welfare to maintain their child care.
Next week the House Ways and Means Committee will release its supplemental budget. The supplemental budget makes modifications to the current fiscal year. The committee members will answer the question: Will we support the Governor’s proposal to slash child care assistance and increase the number of people on TANF or restore funding to the program so that low wage workers can continue to work and keep their children in a safe learning environment? You can help them understand the impact of the Governor’s proposal to cut child care assistance by emailing a few key members in the House. Let them know you oppose the Governor’s proposal to limit access to the working connections child care program only to those families on TANF. Ask them to support low wage workers and their children by maintain support and funding for the working connections child care program.
Contact the Following Key Lawmakers
Rep. Ross Hunter (Chair of Ways and Means Committee)
Speaker Frank Chopp
Rep. Mary Lou Dickerson
Rep. Jeannie Darneille
Majority Leader Pat Sullivan
Rep. Larry Seaquist
Rep. Eric Pettigrew
Rep. Bob Hasegawa