April 07, 2022

Warren, Assistant Speaker Clark, Smith Lead Over 100 Members of Congress in Calling on Biden Administration to Make Urgent Investments in Child Care

Approximately 460,000 families are without reliable child care; 1 in 9 child care jobs have been lost since the start of the pandemic

The letter is co-led by Representatives Suzanne Bonamici (D-Ore.), Jamaal Bowman (D-N.Y.), Katie Porter (D-Calif.), and Michelle "Mikie" Sherrill (D-N.J.)

Text of Letter (PDF)

Washington, D.C. – Today, United States Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Assistant Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Katherine Clark (D-Mass.), and Senator Tina Smith (D-Minn.) led over 100 Members of Congress in a letter to President Joe Biden urging his administration to address the on-going child care crisis and realize his vision for a better America by investing in the child care sector. The Senators and Representatives are calling for urgent passage of President Bidens’ plan to reduce child care costs for families down to 7 percent of their annual income, provide universal pre-K to all 3 and 4-year-olds, and invest in the early childhood workforce and its infrastructure. 

The letter is also co-led by Representatives Suzanne Bonamici (D-Ore.), Jamaal Bowman (D-N.Y.), Katie Porter (D-Calif.), and Michelle "Mikie" Sherrill (D-N.J.) and signed by 31 Senators and 117 Members of the House of Representatives.

“Addressing our nation’s child care crisis remains essential to boosting labor force participation among mothers, helping lower everyday expenses for families and child care providers who are facing higher costs due to inflation, and ensuring all children access the benefits of quality child care that support positive physical and brain development,” wrote the lawmakers. “As you know, the high costs of child care and the difficulty of finding quality, affordable child care are challenges facing too many families across the country.”

The lawmakers continued: “Now is the time to make additional comprehensive, long-term investments in affordable, high-quality child care to build on the critical but largely short-term investments made through the American Rescue Plan. It is clear that child care and early learning investments are an integral part of our nation’s strategy for supporting a robust economy, lowering costs for families, and ensuring the long-term success of our children. With your leadership and support, we are ready to make these investments a reality.”

Senator Warren has consistently called for immediate support for the child care industry:

  • Earlier this week at a hearing of the Senate Finance Committee, Senator Warren called for critical investments in child care to boost economic recovery, increase labor force participation, and fight inflation. 
  • In February 2022, at a hearing of the Senate Finance Committee, Senator Warren made the case for big, bold investments to ensure child care is affordable and accessible for millions of families. 
  • Last year, in a Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee's Subcommittee on Economic Policy hearing, experts agreed with Senator Warren that investment in child care is critical to strong economic recovery. 
  • Beginning in August 2020, Senators Warren and Smith successfully led calls for $50 billion for child care, with $40 billion included in the American Rescue Plan, $10 billion in the December-passed relief bill, and $3.5 billion in the CARES Act. 
  • In June 2021, Senator Warren and more than 100 Colleagues urged leadership to include $700 billion for child care in the infrastructure package. 
  • She has also introduced a number of bills that would invest in child care, including the Building Child Care for a Better Future Act and the Universal Child Care and Early Learning Act
  • Senators Warren, Smith, Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Assistant Speaker Clark, House Appropriations Chairwoman Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.), Congressman Mondaire Jones (D-N.Y.), and Congresswoman Sara Jacobs (D-Calif.) released a new report highlighting the critical need to expand and invest in our child care system and calling for $700 billion to support investments in child care as the country heads towards a post-pandemic economic recovery. 
  • She’s also published op-eds on the need for child care, including one with Mary Kay Henry, International President of the Service Employees International Union.