Source: United States House of Representatives – Congresswoman Lori Trahan (D-MA-03)
LOWELL, MA – Today, Congresswoman Lori Trahan (MA-03) applauded the awarding of $400,000 in federal grant funding from the Administration for Children and Families’ Office of Community Services to The Greater Lawrence Community Action Council, Inc.
“Now more than ever, child care is essential as we work to get our economy back. This critical federal investment will help bring a new child care center to Lawrence, a community full of essential and frontline workers who have consistently gone above and beyond the call of duty during this public health crisis. This kind of investment is needed in communities across the Commonwealth and our nation, and it’s for that reason that I cast my vote for the Child Care is Essential Act months ago. The Senate should do the same,” said Congresswoman Trahan.
“We are overjoyed to have been awarded these funds which will go a long way to allow us to realize our dream of creating a new child care center on Andover Street in Lawrence for the children we serve. I can’t thank our Congresswoman Lori Trahan enough for supporting GLCAC in obtaining this grant,” said Evelyn Friedman, Executive Director and CEO of the Greater Lawrence Community Action Council.
The mission of the Greater Lawrence Community Action Council is to fight poverty in and around Lawrence. In addition to providing child care for low income families, their programs focus on education, social services, health, housing, and youth employment. Each year, the facility serves 29,000 individuals with the goal that people will take advantage of opportunities to achieve self-sufficiency and lift themselves out of poverty.
Trahan recently called attention to the child care crisis being caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Without adequate support from the federal government, Massachusetts could lose 51,646 licensed child care slots, approximately 34% of the child care supply. Prior to the spread of the coronavirus, Massachusetts providers could not ensure care for every child that needed it. With nearly three children per child care slot, working families lacked access to safe, quality child care. The spread of COVID-19 has only worsened this problem to the brink of catastrophe. Since the pandemic, it is now estimated that there are more than four children per child care slot. Without robust federal investments, the child care industry cannot provide the care needed to help Americans return to work.
In July, Trahan supported passage of the Child Care is Essential Act, legislation that provides $50 billion for a stabilization fund for personnel costs, sanitation and cleaning, training, and other services needed to maintain or resume operation of child care programs. If signed into law, Massachusetts child care facilities stand to receive $648.6 million through the stabilization fund. She also voted for the Child Care for Economic Recovery Act, which would provide ongoing federal investments and tax subsidies to help bring quality child care within the reach of families to support ongoing employment. Both pieces of legislation are stalled in the Senate.