What: Over 50 providers, parents, children, and community allies will rally and march in one of the busiest commercial intersections in the Antelope Valley to highlight the essential role family child care providers play in making sure parents can go to work knowing their children are in a nurturing and safe learning environment. They will call on Governor Gavin Newsom to invest in quality child care for California’s economic recovery and growth.
Why: Child Care Providers United has been in contract negotiations with the state of California since February. Providers are demanding fair pay that is based on the true cost of providing quality child care, health care and retirement benefits, paid time off, and increased funding for more child care vouchers for families and a permanent end to family fees.
The state Legislature has proposed $1 billion in new investments in early childhood education and the suspension of family fees. The Governor’s May Revise budget proposal has virtually no new funding for family child care. As the budget is debated before the June 30 deadline, providers are urging the Governor to ensure a budget that invests in California’s children and working families.
Under the state’s current payment system, providers are paid at 2018 rates. Most earn less than minimum wage and do not have access to retirement benefits or paid sick days. Lack of permanent state funding for health care for providers further adds to the instability.
After months of contract talks, the state has refused to offer wage increases or benefits that truly value the work of providers. Without living wages and basic benefits, providers will struggle to keep their doors open and fewer early educators will enter the profession, adding to an already dire child care shortage.
Working parents in areas like the Antelope Valley are among the hardest hit. According to the Center for American Progress, the Antelope Valley is considered a child care desert. A child care desert is any census tract with more than 50 children under age 5 that contains either no child care providers or so few options that there are more than three times as many children as licensed child care slots.
Who: Dozens of child care providers, parents, community advocates including Eric Ohlsen, Palmdale City Councilmember & District Director for State Assemblymember Juan Carrillo
When: Wednesday, May 31, 2023
Time: 10:15 am – 11:00 am
Where: In front of Antelope Valley Mall (on Rancho Vista Blvd and 10th St. W)
1233 Rancho Vista Blvd.
Palmdale, CA 93551
Visuals: Dozens of child care providers, families, advocates marching and chanting with signs, pushing strollers; oversized cutout of Gov. Gavin Newsom
Child Care Providers United brings together 40,000 family child care providers across California and is a partnership of SEIU Local 99, SEIU Local 521, and UDW/AFSCME Local 3930.