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Resolutions & Amendments

35th International Convention - Las Vegas, NV (2002)

Funding and Standards for Child Care

Resolution No. 51
35th International Convention
June 24 - 28, 2002
Las Vegas, NV


AFSCME has long advocated for accessible, affordable, quality child care because we recognize that child care is a critical problem for our members, as it is for all working families in America; and


AFSCME has made child care an issue at the bargaining table and has won a wide variety of child care programs which directly assist AFSCME families; and


AFSCME has fought to raise the wages of child care workers we represent and has succeeded in negotiating wages far above average. However, compensation still does not reflect the true worth of the care provided. In general, pay for child care workers remains shamefully low. Inadequate compensation leads to rapid turnover in the field, which compromises quality care; and


Quality child care is essential to children's safety and development. Investing in child care will pay dividends decades into the future by producing an adult workforce that is better educated, more skilled, more productive, and better able to compete in the global economy; and


States are currently required to spend only a minimum of 4 percent of their Child Care Development Block Grant (CCDBG) funds on quality efforts; and


Even where quality care exists, it remains unaffordable for many Americans due to the gross inadequacy of the resources in the system. Currently, the federal CCDBG serves only 1 in 7 eligible children. In order to be affordable, child care cannot be funded to such a large extent by parents.


When the CCDBG is reauthorized it must be expanded so that all families have access to affordable quality care for infants, preschoolers, and school-age children; and


All working families need child care in order to be independent. Federal funding for the CCDBG should be mandatory so that child care improvements are ensured, rather than requiring child care advocates to fight for authorization each year; and


The federal government must lead the way in improving child care by making a significant investment in improving quality. National standards should be adopted which address issues including, but not limited to, staffing ratios by age group, group size, teacher training and continuing education, and health and safety. Compensation for child care teaching staff must be raised. Their salaries should be comparable to other professions with similar training and experience requirements. At the bargaining table, AFSCME will continue to fight for quality, affordable child care benefits and for equitable wages for our members who provide this vital service.


Glenn Huff, Sr., President and Delegate
AFSCME Local 205, Council 1707
New York