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Child Care Stabilization Fund Toolkit

The child care industry is on the brink of collapse as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Without additional significant and dedicated relief, the U.S. stands to lose 4.5 million child care slots—roughly half of the nation's child care supply. Congress must get back to work and pass targeted relief to stabilize the child care industry and support working families.

Find your representatives here, and follow these tips to connect with lawmakers to make your voice heard.

1. Fact Sheet

Our nation's long-term well-being depends on a child care industry that works for every family. In addition to the proven benefits of high-quality child care to a child's learning and healthy development, access to care is an essential pillar of America's labor market and economy. Sixty-seven percent of children under age 6 in the United States have all available parents in the labor force, which means millions of American workers rely on child care just to be able to go to work each day. Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic has pushed an already-struggling child care industry to the brink of collapse.

Dedicated relief through a Child Care Stabilization Fund will enable states to provide grants to struggling child care providers to help shore up the market and ensure parents have access to the care that will allow them to return to work.

2. Phone Calls

How to Make an Impactful Phone Call

  • Personalize: Is there a quick story you can tell that explains why you want your member of Congress to support child care? Feel free to personalize the script below.
  • Make It Memorable: Lawmakers and their staff receive many calls each day. Do what you can to make your call more conversational and memorable.
  • Call to Action: Make sure the member or staffer knows that they need to support child care.

Phone Call Script

Hi, my name is [NAME] and I live in [MEMBER OF CONGRESS]'s [district/state]. First, thank you to [REP. NAME] for providing assistance to help businesses and families during this crisis. However, I'm calling to let you know that Congress must get back to work and pass significant, dedicated relief to stabilize the child care industry and support working families.

COVID-19 has created an acute child care crisis for American families, providers, and businesses. Time is running out to save the child care industry. Across the country, 40% of child care providers say they will close permanently without relief.

As states continue reopening more sectors of the economy, it is clear that the American economy cannot succeed if the child care industry fails. Without child care, millions of Americans will not be able to return to work. Economic recovery is not possible without a strong child care system. Since May, about 7 million people each week have not worked because they didn't have child care.

That's why I'm asking [MEMBER OF CONGRESS] to support including a Child Care Stabilization Fund in the next stimulus package. Significant, dedicated relief through a child care stabilization fund will enable states to provide grants to struggling child care providers to help shore up the market and ensure parents have access to the care that will allow them to return to work.

Responses to Reactions

  • Answer to negative reaction: Your constituents and working families across the country need reliable child care options when they return to work. I hope you reconsider.
  • Answer to positive reaction: Thank you for listening and supporting this vital industry. I hope you'll encourage your colleagues to also support the child care industry in the next stimulus package.
  • Answer to neutral reaction (will pass along to member): Thank you very much for your time and consideration. I hope [REP. NAME] will fight to support this critical industry.

3. Emails

Tips for Drafting an Impactful Email

  • Personalize: Insert a personal story in the below script that explains why you want your member to support child care.
  • Make It Memorable: Lawmakers and their staff receive hundreds of emails every day. Do what you can to make your email memorable.
  • Call to Action: Make sure the member or staffer knows that they need to support child care.
  • Follow Up: Feel free to follow up on your email if you don't receive a response.

Sample Email

Subject: America needs child care relief

Dear [NAME OF MEMBER OF CONGRESS],

I Iive in [MEMBER OF CONGRESS]'s [district/state], and I'm writing to encourage you and your colleagues in Congress to get back to work and pass significant, dedicated relief to stabilize the child care industry and support working families. First, I want to thank you for providing assistance to help businesses and families during this crisis. However, additional significant and dedicated relief is still needed to support the child care industry. Time is running out to save the child care industry. Across the country, 40% of child care providers say they will close permanently without relief.

Child care isn't like other industries and is among the most consequential to America's economic recovery. The COVID-19 pandemic has hit the child care industry especially hard, causing widespread layoffs and closures as a result of catastrophic drops in enrollment. Extended closures and slow reopenings have and continue to put a substantial percentage of providers permanently out of business, exacerbating the existing realities of child care deserts, particularly in rural areas and low-income neighborhoods. At the same time, child care providers who remained open or are now reopening will have to operate on financial losses for months as a result of new social distancing requirements and low enrollment, as parents slowly return to work. The devastating impact of these unique realities cannot be sustained without direct federal investments that ensure child care providers can keep their doors open to meet the needs of working families.

As states continue reopening more sectors of the economy, it is clear that the American economy cannot succeed if the child care industry fails. Economic recovery is not possible without a strong child care system. Since May, about 7 million people each week have not worked because they didn't have child care.

You can help the nation's child care industry survive this crisis by supporting the inclusion of a Child Care Stabilization Fund in the next stimulus package. Significant, dedicated relief through a child care stabilization fund will enable states to provide grants to struggling child care providers to help shore up the market and ensure parents have access to the care that will allow them to return to work.

I highly encourage your colleagues in Congress to do the same.

Thank you,

[NAME]

4. Letters to the Editor

Sample Draft

As businesses start to reopen their doors and Americans begin to return to work, we must ask ourselves: who will watch our children?

[INSERT PERSONAL ANECDOTE/EXPERIENCE]

My struggles with child care during the pandemic aren't unique. COVID-19 has created an acute child care crisis for millions of American families and businesses. In fact, without significant additional funding and dedicated relief, studies show that we stand to lose 4.5 million child care slots in communities across the U.S.—roughly half of our nation's child care supply. But time is running out to save the child care industry. Across the country, 40% of child care providers say they will close permanently without relief.

Child care isn't like other industries and is among the most essential for America's economic recovery. My [FAMILY/BUSINESS] depends on child care so that we can [INSERT PERSONAL EXPERIENCE]. Economic recovery is not possible without a strong child care system. Since May, about 7 million people each week have not worked because they didn't have child care.

I strongly urge [INSERT NAMES OF LOCAL MEMBERS OF CONGRESS] to get back to work and pass significant, dedicated relief to stabilize the child care industry and support working families.

[NAME, TITLE, CITY]

5. Tweets

Sample Tweets

  • The economic fallout from COVID-19 continues to impact the child care industry. Congress must get back to work and pass significant, dedicated relief to stabilize the child care industry and support working families.
  • Time is running out to #savechildcare. 40% of child care providers across the country will close permanently without significant, dedicated relief. I'm calling on [MEMBER OF CONGRESS TWITTER HANDLE] to get back to work and pass relief to stabilize the child care industry.
  • Economic recovery is not possible without a strong child care system. Each week, 7 million parents can't return to work because they don't have child care. [MEMBER OF CONGRESS TWITTER HANDLE] should #savechildcare to save our economy.

6. Social Graphics

Static Graphics

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Credits:

Created with images by Paul Hanaoka - "Happiness" • Austin Distel - "Model: @Austindistel https://www.instagram.com/austindistel/ Photographer: @breeandstephen https://www.instagram.com/breeandstephen/ This photo is free for public use. ❤️ If you do use this photo, Please credit in caption or metadata with link to "www.distel.com". " • AbsolutVision - "Business newspaper pages" • Charles Deluvio - "untitled image"