Colorado legislators passed several important measures during their late, but productive, session which concluded last week.
Two of the bills which will impact infants and toddlers in the state are:
- H.B.1053 authorizes the state Department of Human Services (DHS) to provide technical assistance and financial incentives to early learning programs to maintain their Quality Rating and Improvement System level or to advance to a higher level. It also directs DHS to design, implement, and operate a statewide program of early childhood mental health consultation. The program will increase the number of qualified and appropriately trained early childhood mental health consultants for on-site consultations to support a variety of early childhood settings and practices from the prenatal period through 8 years of age.
- S.B. 205 creates the Healthy Families and Workplaces Act, which requires employers to provide paid sick leave to employees under various circumstances. In addition to providing paid sick leave as specified in the federal Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act, beginning in January 2021 the Act requires all employers in Colorado to provide paid sick leave to their employees, accrued at one hour of paid sick leave for every 30 hours worked, up to 48 hours.
ZERO TO THREE congratulates the advocates, including Think Babies™ state partners, Colorado Children’s Campaign and Clayton Early Learning, and policymakers in Colorado who kept young children and their families at the forefront during this difficult time.