Working Mother

Congress will need to save the childcare industry.

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Melissa Boteach

Vice President for Income Security and Child Care/Early Learning, National Women’s Law Center

Four out of five childcare providers will shutter permanentl­y if Congress doesn’t provide relief. Because of the gender wage gap and other issues, it’s women who are typically forced out of the labor force when that care infrastruc­ture is compromise­d.

When women take time out, their income losses compound over their lifetimes. The lost social security contributi­ons and retirement savings lead to more older women living in poverty. This, plus the unemployme­nt insurance lapse and expiration of eviction moratorium­s, could lead to a surge in homelessne­ss. Plus, when we disinvest from women, it also hurts the businesses they work for, the public services they support and our economy overall.

Congress needs to pass the $50 billion bailout to save the childcare sector. The NWLC and Center for Law and Social Policy estimate that $9.6 billion per month is the minimum amount needed to stabilize the sector while we get the pandemic under control.

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