Source: United States House of Representatives – Congresswoman Sara Jacobs (D-CA-53)
Washington, D.C. – Congresswoman Sara Jacobs (D-CA-53) spoke on the House floor Monday in support of including transformative investments in child care in the Build Back Better Act.
Jacobs noted that millions of parents have left the workforce due to child care needs and responded to critics who claim that we cannot afford to invest in child care, citing research by Nobel Prize winning economist James Heckman, who has found that we save $7 dollars for every $1 dollar that we invest in high quality early childhood programs.
Jacobs concluded, “So, while some of my colleagues may argue that we can’t afford to do these things, the truth is: we can’t afford not to.”
Last week, Congresswoman Jacobs wrote to Congressman Robert C. “Bobby” Scott, Chairman of the House Committee on Education and Labor, calling for an expansive and inclusive child care program to be included in the Build Back Better Act. Congresswoman Jacobs is a House co-lead of the Universal Child Care & Early Learning Act, legislation which ensures that every family has access to high-quality, affordable child care.
Congresswoman Jacobs remarks as delivered were as follows (Video: Twitter, YouTube):
Madam Speaker, in San Diego County, which I’m proud to represent, since the pandemic started, more than 500 child care providers have closed their doors and the families of more than 190,000 kids don’t have access to the care they need.
Across the country, nearly 1.6 million moms of children under 17 are still missing from the labor force, an economic crisis decades in the making.
The Build Back Better Act is a once in a generation opportunity to lower the cost of child care, expand availability, and boost the wages of the essential child care workers that make our country go.
And it isn’t just the right thing for our families, it’s the right thing for our economy.
According to a Nobel Prize winning economist, we save $7 dollars for every $1 we invest in quality early childhood programs
So, while some of my colleagues may argue that we can’t afford to do these things, the truth is: we can’t afford not to.
Madam Speaker, we have to meet this moment and we have to build back better.