Have you ever had to decide between returning to work or being able to take care of your children?
Have you ever had to choose between paying for child care and paying the rent?
Have you ever had to work overtime because of short-staffing as a result of limited child care options?
Have you ever had to postpone family planning because of low wages, inadequate health care, and inaccessible child care?
Then you know childcare is a worker’s rights issue.
UCWVA is working to make child care accessible and affordable for all workers.
The pandemic has deepened the ongoing crisis of child care in our communities. Parents and providers have been forced to make impossible choices around the rising costs and plummeting availability of child care. Workers across all sectors of our economy–from retail to the trades to higher education and beyond–have either had to sacrifice caregiving responsibilities for their jobs, or their jobs for caregiving responsibilities.
In higher education, reliable childcare means that students who are parenting can still attend classes. It means that instructors and advisors can focus on student support. It means that staff members do not have to choose between doing their jobs and being parents.
Childcare is getting more expensive, but the state of Virginia is investing less in inflation-adjusted dollars.
That’s why UCWVA’s Childcare for All Campaign is fighting for:
Childcare as a public service
Workers and their families in all industries need quality, reliable childcare in order to perform their jobs. For too long, parents have struggled to find childcare in the private sector, facing high tuition and long waitlists, and these problems were only exacerbated by the pandemic. We are calling for increased public support for childcare through options like universal pre-k.
Better working conditions for childcare providers
Childcare providers’ working conditions are our children’s learning conditions, so UCWVA calls for higher pay, better benefits, and more protections for childcare providers to attract and retain highly qualified, reliable providers.
Part of a high-quality childcare system is the ability for parents to choose when and how to have children. That means ensuring access to contraceptives and safe, affordable abortions.