Watch Springfield ABC WICS Ch 20 report on our child care lobby day:
On March 21st, hundreds of child care providers, working parents, and kids united in Springfield to press for our ‘Working Families Agenda’, which includes a bill that would lower parent co-pays and expand access and eligibility for the Child Care Assistance Program. Working parents and providers spoke out, sharing personal stories about why these reforms are so critical. See some of the testimony below:
Fatima Traore is a working, single mom from Moline and she shared her story with lawmakers in Springfield.
“I work 80 hours every 2 weeks,” explained Ms. Traore, “but one week I had the opportunity to work an extra day and make overtime. I struggle to make ends meet so I jumped on the opportunity for extra hours. Little did I know, those extra hours I worked would mean that I would lose the affordable child care that I rely on every day and be kicked out of the Child Care Assistance Program.”
Stories like Ms. Traore’s are far too common in Illinois, and thousands of other parents choose between co-payments and food on the table for their families.
Providers and parents also advocated for an increase in the state’s minimum wage so more Illinois families can bring home paychecks that can support a family, and a fair income tax system that would ensure wealthy individuals pay their fair share. With a fair income tax, programs like the Child Care Assistance Program wouldn’t be threatened by cuts year after year.
Our voices were heard in Springfield last week, but we need to make sure lawmakers got the message. We’re heading back to Springfield for our next Lobby Day on Thursday, May 16th. Click here to sign up and save a spot on the bus coming from your area!
Check out all the photos from Lobby Day below: