Friday, May 6, 2011

Bronx Councilwoman Annabel Palma Responds to Budget Cuts in NYC Child Care System, Affecting 16,500 Children

Child care is often a critical factor in allowing a mother to work, especially in low income communities. Maybe the well paid officials making these decisions think low income families should hire nannies?


Statement by Council General Welfare Chair Annabel Palma
In response to the Administration’s plan for subsidized child care

The Executive Budget released this morning is one step forward. However, for those low-income and working families who rely on subsidized child care, there are more questions than answers at this point.

There are many concerns about how the child care system will look moving forward. Based on what the Administration has proposed, I am skeptical of whether this is an appropriate solution for our City’s children. More conversations and details are needed to determine how services can remain intact for all 16,500 children slated to lose their day care or child care. .

The Mayor seeks to replace $91 million in subsidized childcare services with roughly $40 million for childcare and Out-of-School Time (OST). The shift in funding from subsidized child care to OST - which is meant to provide afterschool programs and services - will still leave many working families scrambling for child care during traditional working hours. Further, it is unclear what the impact will be on existing OST programs, as well as to child care centers, classrooms and providers.

I look forward to working with the Administration to find answers to these questions. The Speaker and my Council colleagues will continue to look for suitable, long-term solutions for the subsidized child care system and the best ways for minimizing the impacts of other city wide cuts.

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