By: Gabrielle Avellaneda
So many LGBTQ+ families struggle to maintain a full-time job in addition to caring for themselves and their families. Low and middle-income families, in particular, must have access to affordable, high-quality child care and early education. That’s where the #BuildBackBetter legislation proposed by Congress and the Biden-Harris administration comes in! Keep reading to learn more about how #BuildBackBetter legislation can help our families—and what you can do to support it.
What’s in #BuildBackBetter for Child Care?
The #BuildBackBetter legislation will ensure that low- and moderate-income families can access high-quality care in a variety of settings.
- Families will pay only a portion of their income. Payment would be based on a sliding scale for high-quality child care for children under 5-years old.
- For the most hard-pressed working families, child care costs for their young children would be fully covered.
- Families earning 1.5 times their state median income will pay no more than 7% of their income for all children under age 5
- The plan will also provide families with a range of inclusive and accessible options to choose from for their child. Options range from child care centers to family child care providers to Early Head Start.
- The plan would open up child care for 8 million additional children. This is more than eleven times the number of children currently being served!
Build Back Better would save the average family $14,800 per year on child care expenses.
What’s in #BuildBackBetter for Early Childhood Education?
As proposed by the Biden-Harris administration, Build Back Better will provide free preschool to all three and four-year-olds.
Specifically, this legislation would:
- Ensure that all publicly-funded preschool is high-quality, with low student-to-teacher ratios, developmentally appropriate curriculum, and supportive classroom environments that are inclusive for all students
- Increase compensation and professional development for early childhood providers and educators
- Provided that all employees in participating pre-K and Head Start programs will earn at least $15 per hour and people with similar qualifications will receive pay comparable with kindergarten teachers
The Build Back Better early education plan would benefit five million children and save the average family $13,000 when fully implemented.
Why do we urgently need these programs?
Our families need high-quality, accessible child care and early education because…
- One out of four women who reported becoming unemployed during the pandemic said it was because of a lack of child care—twice the rate among men
- As a result of a variety of factors, including policy choices grounded in racism and sexism, low-wage workers, solo mothers, and women of color—three groups with considerable overlap—are all too often not in the economic position to leave the paid labor force to care for their children
- Women of color, and Black women in particular, have historically had much higher levels of labor force participation when compared with white women, but they also experience many more job disruptions due to inadequate child care.
What can you do to help?
The bold solutions outlined above will help all families—especially LGBTQ+ families and families from communities that have been historically oppressed—survive and thrive in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
And you can help get this plan enacted! With this simple tool, you can reach out to your members of Congress and urge them to support #BuildBackBetter legislation to address the needs of LGBTQ+ people, families, and communities!
Tell Congress to Support LGBTQ+ Families with #BuildBackBetter Legislation
Urge your Congressmembers to fight LGBTQ+ poverty with comprehensive solutions!