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Advocacy - Because Everything We Do for Kids Matters!

Child Care Aware of Washington advocates for all WA families to have access to high-quality child care and early learning programs, and for our state's child care professionals to earn a living wage.


Did you know business can play a key role in strengthening their workforce today and tomorrow via high-quality child care?

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation recently released a report, "Workforce of Today, Workforce of Tomorrow: The Business Case for High-Quality Childcare," that details how businesses benefit when their employees have access to high-quality child care and the easy things businesses can do to ensure access to affordable child care programs.

Click here for a list of things Washington businesses can do to increase access to high-quality child care in their communities. Haga clic aquí para obtener una lista de las cosas que las empresas de Washington pueden hacer para aumentar el acceso a cuidado infantil de alta calidad en sus comunidades.

Muncipalities can click here for ways they can increase access. Municipalidades puede hacer clic aquí para obtener una lista de las cosas que las empresas de Washington pueden hacer para aumentar el acceso.

Businesses considering opening an onsite or near-site child care can learn more about what to consider here. Los negocios que consideren abrir un centro de cuidado infantil en el sitio o cerca del sitio pueden obtener más información sobre lo que deben considerar aquí.

"Today's workers need childcare. Tomorrow's workers are in childcare." ~ Katharine B. Stevens, American Enterprise Institute, Workforce of Today, Workforce of Tomorrow: The Business Case for High-Quality Childcare, U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, June 2017

Economic data sheet

Learn more about how and why Washington businesses are supporting high-quality child care:

Find Out About the State of Child Care and Kindergarten Readiness in Your Area

    Benton & Franklin counties

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    Grays Harbor County

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    Pierce County

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    Tri-Cities area

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    Chelan County

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    Island County

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    San Juan County

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    Greater Vancouver area

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    Clallam County

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    Jefferson County

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    Skagit County

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    Whatcom County

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    Douglas County

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    King County

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    Snohomish County

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    Yakima County

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    Eastern WA

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    Lewis County

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    Greater Spokane area

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    Grant County

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    Okanogan County

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    Thurston County

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    Two babies in child careWhat's Happening on the State Level?

    The 2018 Legislative Session ended March 8. The final budget contains only a few real victories for child care and early learning.

    Good News

    • A new statewide child care collaborative task force will be created by the Department of Commerce to examine the effects of child care affordability and accessibility on Washington’s workforce and businesses.
    • Funding is provided to develop trauma-informed care resources for providers.
    • Funding and policy is approved to research nurse consultation supports for providers.
    • ECEAP programs were granted additional eligibility flexibility, allowing more rural programs to operate.
    • Home visiting is expanded.
    • The Early Learning Facilities Grant is funded in the Capital budget.
    • Funding is provided to expand the Business of Child Care trainings to help provider small businesses manage the complex business side of their work.
    • The Working Connections Child Care (WCCC) subsidy program will be consolidated into the new state Department of Children, Youth and Families in 2019.

    So-So News

    • The state is in position to receive a significant increase in federal child care funding, and the new state budget identifies priorities for that money. The state Department of Early Learning (DEL) is tasked with developing a spending plan that prioritizes increasing WCCC reimbursement rates for those providers that are farthest from market rate and those that provide infant/toddler care.

    Bad News

    • Zero state dollars are invested in WCCC and Early Achievers, despite the state receiving a windfall of unexpected revenue.
    • Outside of home visiting, this budget invests no real new money into child care and early learning.

    What You Can Do

    It is never too early or too late to let your legislators know you support state investment in high-quality child care and Early Achievers, and in increasing the reimbursement rates paid to providers who accept children on state subsidies/WCCC. Visit our Action Center today to quickly email your representatives.

    Washington's Child Care Providers Under Tremendous Strain

    Our child care provider survey on the impact of WA's minimum wage increase shows that child care providers across the state are facing tough times and making tough choices. The impact is greater due to low state subsidy reimbursement rates and the long-term effects of the Great Recession. Click here for results of our survey. Haga clic aquí para obtener información de nuestra encuesta.

    Share our fact sheet on the impacts of low state reimbursement rates to child care centers. Comparta nuestra hoja informativa sobre los impactos de las bajas tasas de reembolso estatal a los centros de cuidado infantil.

    Happening Now in Washington, D.C.

    The Child Care for Working Families Act was introduced in Congress last September. Sponsored by Sen. Patty Murray and Rep. Bobby Scott, the bill would help ensure that every family that needs child care has access to high-quality, affordable programs. You can help support the Child Care for Working Families Act by contacting your federal representatives and telling them you support high-quality and affordable child care for American families. Click here to visit Child Care Works and make your voice heard. Read our statement in support of the Child Care for Working Families Act. Lea nuestra declaración en apoyo de la Ley de Cuidado Infantil para Familias Trabajadoras.

    You can learn more about the act in this interview of Sen. Murray by Heidi Murkoff, author of the acclaimed "What to Expect When You're Expecting" books.

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Take Action for Kids!

You can make a real difference for young children and their families. Simply let your elected representatives know you support investment in high-quality child care, and in the child care assistance programs that allow working families to afford quality child care and early learning programs. Visit our Action Center to send a message to your rep in Olympia.

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Sign up to receive our email advocacy alerts so you will know when your voice is needed most.

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Do you want to become more involved? Become a Parent Ambassador and learn how to engage directly with legislators. Click here to learn more.