JOLIET, Ill. – State Rep. Natalie Manley, D-Joliet, is urging Gov. J.B. Pritzker to sign the Off-Hours Child Care Act, a Manley-led initiative that would empower the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) to design an off-hours child care program that meets the needs of first responders and other third shift workers.
“Creating an accessible off-hours child care program would be a game changer for many parents across our state,” Manley said. “I understand the challenges these families face, because I lived it. Working overnight shifts while trying to raise a young child is incredibly difficult, particularly if you are a single parent. It’s not easy finding reliable, responsible help – but I believe we can take steps in Illinois to increase access to quality care and remove a significant hurdle in the lives of many people trying to support their family.”
Under Manley’s House Bill 1571, IDHS would be scheduled to conduct and return a study on a possible child care program to the General Assembly by Jan. 2023, after which a program would be implemented in July 2023. The Manley measure recognizes that finding child care is a burden on third shift workers because most child care centers in Illinois are only open during normal work hours.
House Bill 1571 passed the General Assembly without opposition and has been sent to the governor for final approval.
“Many off-hours workers, especially our first responders and hospital workers, are on call, and ready to assist us at any hour,” Manley said. “In our most difficult times, they’re always ready to serve. It’s important to remember the sacrifices they and their families make for us to have that privilege. Let’s do what we can on the state level to make their lives a little bit easier.”
For more information, please contact RepManley@gmail.com.