PFCCAG is partnering with the Georgia Early Education Alliance for Ready Students (GEEARS) in urging Congress to pass the Build Back Better plan. The legislation includes funding for child care and universal pre-school which are historic and transformative. While details of the legislation continue to evolve, we need to tell Congress that “Child Care Can’t Wait”. Please call, e-mail, or text your Congressperson and Senators expressing your support for child care and for passage of the Build Back Better plan.
Just as important, encourage the parents you serve to call, e-mail, or text too!!
The information below was prepared by GEEARS to explain the Build Back Better plan and offers an easy way to contact your Congressperson and Senators.
One Step Closer to Historic Investments in Children & Families
Last Thursday, the President announced the new framework for reconciliation (a.k.a., the Build Back Better plan). The plan would be historic and transformative for Georgia families and children, with significant investments in early childhood education, health, and family supports.
Although there are still a lot of unknowns, we are excited to share some of the highlights of the framework with you and ask that you reach out to your U.S. Representatives and Senators through our action alert to show your support for this momentous legislation.
First, the bill includes a total of $400 billion for early childhood education, which includes implementing free, universal preschool for all 3- and 4-year-olds and greatly increasing supports for low- and middle-income families with young children to access affordable, high-quality child care. For child care, the plan would cap the amount eligible families pay at 7% of their income, with families with lower incomes paying even less (i.e., sliding scale). The preschool and child care pieces of this bill are estimated to increase access to approximately 6 million and 20 million children, respectively, supporting families’ participation in the workforce and setting young children up for success in kindergarten and beyond.
The bill also includes significant investments in health care and supports for families that would have long-lasting, multigenerational impacts. These provisions, should they pass, will transform the health care landscape in Georgia and provide families with much-needed financial relief and more affordable housing options. Some highlights include:
Extending the expanded Child Tax Credit, which features $300 monthly payments for children under age 6, through 2022
Making the Child Tax Credit permanently refundable so that families with the greatest need won’t be excluded for making too little
Closing the Medicaid coverage gap to insure an additional 4 million people, including many working parents of young children who are currently excluded in Georgia and other non-Medicaid expansion states
Requiring one year of postpartum Medicaid coverage (up from 60 days)
Implementing 12 months of continuous Medicaid eligibility for children, which will prevent many young children from experiencing harmful gaps in coverage
Making the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), called Peach Care in Georgia, permanent
Investing in safe, affordable housing, including rental and dow payment assistance and lead paint remediation
While exciting, the bill is not over the finish line yet, and we need your help to make sure investments in young children remain priorities. Reach out to your U.S. Senators and Representative with our action alert to show your support for significant, sustainable funding for early childhood education or post on social using our new digital toolkit with easy, ready-to-go digital copy and images.
While this is a momentous moment for children and families, we at GEEARS recognize that the work continues on several pieces that were ultimately cut from the bill, specifically paid family and medical leave. We recommit ourselves to continuing to advocate for this critical benefit to ensure families have the time they need to care for a new child, themselves, or a loved one.
Additionally, we recognize the importance of state implementation in determining the success of these investments in improving child and family outcomes. If passed, we look forward to working with state leaders, partners, educators, providers, and families to support the successful implementation of these new investments.
Lastly, we offer our sincerest gratitude to all of those across our state who continue to advocate on behalf of Georgia’s youngest children. Let’s cross the finish line!