SPRINGFIELD—At this morning’s grand reopening ceremony for the $15 million renovation of the Governor’s Mansion, child care providers interrupted Governor Rauner mid-speech.
Chanting “Money for kids and education, instead of mansion renovations” and then delivering a mic-checked message that said, in part, “We are here because Bruce Rauner wrecked child care…..because under Bruce Rauner…Governor Rauner: You wrecked Child Care in Illinois—rebuild child care now,” the child care providers loudly challenged the Governor’s misplaced priorities.
Protesters interrupted Governor Bruce Rauner at the mansion’s grand opening. They were protesting against Rauner’s changes to the Child Care Assistance Program. Rauner says he respects freedom of speech, but there’s a time and a place. @wics_abc20 @foxillinois pic.twitter.com/bIJKmnVWdp
— Cymphanie Sherman (@CymphanieS) July 14, 2018
While the Governor wants to construct a legacy for himself as a builder—quite literally in the case of the mansion renovation—the harsh reality is that he has ignored the needs and concerns of working Illinois families.
His attack on the Child Care Assistance Program is one of the most egregious instances of the destruction he’s wrought on low-income families in particular. Citing the extensive damage the Governor has done to the program, protestors both inside the ceremony – and those in a march culminating outside the mansion, demanded that he take immediate steps to rebuild the Child Care Assistance Program.
Kudos to whoever chose Bastille Day to celebrate a $15 million Mansion renovation while low-income moms who you took childcare from protest outside the fence. A great “Let Them Eat Cake” moment. @IllinoisWorking @SEIUhciimk #twillhttps://t.co/Xew9Gc5BqJ https://t.co/GSDpaun6dk
— Rep. Greg Harris (@repgregharris) July 15, 2018
In 2015, Gov. Rauner made eligibility changes that ended up kicking nearly 56,000 children out of the Child Care Assistance Program and ensured their families had a much harder if not impossible challenge climbing out of poverty and ensuring a stable life for their children.
The Governor has actively fought to dismantle child care. He’s repeatedly vetoed legislation to restore and expand CCAP eligibility, despite desperate pleas from parents that his CCAP cuts caused them to lose their jobs, drop out of school, and not be able to pay taxes.
While working families and child care providers across Illinois have successfully fought back to reverse these eligibility cuts—the state still hasn’t reached out to the vast majority of families who lost care in July of 2015 to let them know they can reapply.
As a result, there are currently 40,000 fewer children and 36,000 fewer families in the program than in 2015. And there are now 10,000 fewer professionals providing child care in the program.
The State Journal-Register – July 14, 2018
“Less than a minute into his comments, Gov. Rauner was interrupted by a group of eight to 10 chanting protesters wearing T-shirts that said, “Rauner wrecked child care” and “Rebuild child care now.” The group was escorted away as they chanted, “Money for kids and education instead of mansion renovations.” After the group was far enough away for the governor to be heard, the program resumed.
KMOV.com (St. Louis) – Emma Hogg – July 14, 2018
“The opening wasn’t without protest. A crowd of onlookers upset over the child care assistance program, briefly interupting the governor’s opening remarks…”
Tri States Public Radio – Brian Mackey – July 16, 2018
“Near the beginning of the ceremony There was a brief protest organized by the SEIU labor union, whose members have been fighting Gov. Bruce Rauner for higher wages. They demanded “money for kids and education, not for mansion renovation.”
Capitol Fax – Rich Miller – Monday, Jul 16, 2018
* So, um, what would be a good “time and place” for a protest, governor?