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Children’s Agenda calls for more public dollars for child care services

Jan 15, 2020

The Children’s Agenda, a local youth advocacy group, says there is a growing shortage of available child care in New York and the rest of the nation.

That conclusion comes from the group’s new report on child care options. In the report, it shows that while Rochester has made strides in Pre-Kindergarten, child care for infants and toddlers is becomingly increasingly difficult to find here.

Credit Michelle Kondrich for NPR

The Children’s Agenda Director of Policy, Pete Nabozny, says care for the youngest children is both the most expensive and least profitable for providers.

“We're calling for the state to prioritize investments in infants and toddlers [and] prioritize investments in high poverty communities, where this child care market doesn't seem to be working as well as it is in more affluent areas," he said.

The report concludes that greater investments from local, state, and federal partners are needed to stabilize the community’s child care system, allow child care workers to earn a living wage, and ensure children receive the care and support they need to thrive.

“The bottom line is that the child care system in New York State really suffers from a lack of public investment,” Nabozny said.

He adds there should be serious consideration for establishing universal child care programs and moving towards a system where children of all ages can get high-quality care from qualified and well-compensated professionals.