Leading early childhood nonprofit urges administration and Congress to Think Babies in coming years
WASHINGTON — ZERO TO THREE, the leading nonprofit dedicated to ensuring all babies and toddlers have a strong start in life, congratulated President-Elect Joe Biden and Vice President-Elect Kamala Harris today as they were officially declared the winners of the 2020 presidential election. The organization commended the President-Elect and Vice President-Elect, along with winners of House and Senate races nationwide, and expressed enthusiasm to work with the incoming administration and Congress on issues crucial to families of young children in the years to come.
“We wholeheartedly congratulate President-Elect Biden and Vice President-Elect Harris on their victory this week, following what’s been a long and difficult election year for us all,” stated ZERO TO THREE Executive Director Matthew Melmed. “The issues facing families with young children don’t discriminate based on who you voted for, and we look forward to working with the Biden Administration on behalf of babies and toddlers across the country.”
“Today is an opportunity for our country to come together and commit to solutions that will lead families out of this pandemic and set them on a path to security and success,” stated ZERO TO THREE Chief Policy Officer Myra Jones-Taylor. “Our congratulations go out to President-Elect Biden, Vice President-Elect Harris, and to all the champions of babies and toddlers across the country who won their hard-fought races this week.”
Before and during the pandemic, ZERO TO THREE has advocated for policies that will improve the lives of infants, toddlers, and their families across the country. The organization has called on Congress to pass a COVID-19 stimulus plan containing at least $57 billion to stabilize the child care industry and support Early Head Start programs, and renews that call today for Congress to take action during the coming lame duck period.
ZERO TO THREE will continue its strong advocacy efforts on Capitol Hill and expand partnerships with advocates in states across the country, and expects the incoming administration and Congress to take swift action on behalf of infants, toddlers, and their families. In addition to immediate COVID-19 relief for families and child care providers, policy priorities include:
- Economic security policies foundational to strengthening families with young children, including a $15 federal minimum wage, enhanced and increased “take-up” of federal and state Earned Income Tax Credits, a child allowance through a Young Child Tax Credit, and “Baby Bonds” to help close the wealth gap;
- Family-oriented workplace policies, such as permanent national paid family and medical leave, paid sick days, and fair work schedule policies;
- Establishing a health care system available to all adults and children, including extending Medicaid coverage to 12 months postpartum and covering maternal health care innovations such as doulas;
- Transforming pediatric care to become the gateway to comprehensive family-centered care and developmental support;
- Strengthened mental health services essential for babies and families;
- Comprehensive approaches to family strengthening and transforming child welfare;
- Expansion of Early Head Start to reach all eligible infants and toddlers, while prioritizing enrolling significantly more pregnant women; and
- A comprehensive high-quality child care system for all working families, recognizing that child care is a public good and a key foundation for a strong economy.
Learn more about ZERO TO THREE’s ongoing policy response to COVID-19.
About ZERO TO THREE
ZERO TO THREE works to ensure all babies and toddlers benefit from the family and community connections critical to their well-being and development. Since 1977, the organization has advanced the proven power of nurturing relationships by transforming the science of early childhood into helpful resources, practical tools and responsive policies for millions of parents, professionals and policymakers. For more information, and to learn how to become a ZERO TO THREE member, please visit zerotothree.org, facebook.com/ZEROTOTHREE or follow @ZEROTOTHREE on Twitter.