President Signs Child Care and Development Block Grant Act into Law
The bill offers access to high-quality, affordable child care for children and families.
Today, President Obama signed the Child Care and Development Block Grant Act of 2014 (CCDBG) into law, reauthorizing the program for the first time since 1996. For the first time, the new law establishes in statute a set-aside specifically targeted to improve the quality of care for infants and toddlers. The following is a statement from Matthew Melmed, Executive Director of ZERO TO THREE:
**“It is heartening to see that one of the new law’s main principles is to affirm the importance of quality infant-toddler care, signaling a growing recognition of the importance of the first three years in preparing children for success in school and life. This law bolsters quality care for babies by including a requirement long promoted by ZERO TO THREE that sets aside 3% of both discretionary and mandatory funds to improve the quality of infant-toddler care at the state level.
But this work cannot be done on the cheap. We must now make sure that states have adequate funding to improve the quality of experiences for children, while ensuring access for the millions of infants and toddlers in need of care. This must be one of our top priorities.“**
More Facts At a Glance:
- 6 million infants and toddlers are spending a significant portion of their day—and therefore time when development is being influenced—in child care.
- 27% of children receiving child care subsidies funded by CCDBG are infants and toddlers. CCDBG, however, is able to serve only one in six eligible children.
- 63% of mothers with infants are in the labor force.
- For single mothers, the cost of infant child care varies anywhere from 25% to 69% of the mother’s median income.
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ZERO TO THREE and CLASP's "Building Strong Foundations: Advancing Comprehensive Policies for Infants, Toddlers, and Families" project seeks to promote federal and state policies that comprehensively …