SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – Local child care providers joined state Rep. Melissa Conyears-Ervin, D-Chicago, last week to testify on the importance of restoring eligibility to low-income families affordable child care through the Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP). Governor Rauner cut eligibility to the program when he took office.
“Parents in our district are struggling because the governor cut eligibility to the Child Care Assistance Program, forcing thousands of children out of quality childcare if their parents could not pay the difference,” Conyears-Ervin said. “As a new mother, I empathize with families who were forced into this situation that either takes more money out of the hands of our hard working families or forces parents to sacrifice quality child care – it is unacceptable.”
Conyears-Ervin was joined by two local child care providers who testified on the affect the governor’s cuts had on the families they work with. Conyears-Ervin’s legislation, House Bill 721, would restore eligibility to low-income, working families for the CCAP to the same level as before the governor cut it. This increase would allow a single mother with a child working full time who makes about $14 an hour to be eligible for assistance, as opposed to current eligibility of a parent making at most $12 an hour. By making this increase in eligibility, Conyears-Ervin could return access to CCAP for up to 30,000 children.
“CCAP has made child care affordable for many working families and single parents while they work to make ends meet or attend school,” Conyears-Ervin said. “We should not punish people for trying to get an education or providing for their families. I will continue to fight for our hard working families to ensure they have access to quality and affordable childcare.”