UPDATE: Victory! On June 28, 2016, after receiving urgent calls from UDW family child care providers, Governor Brown signed the state budget for fiscal year 2016-17 into law. Rate increases are expected to go into effect on January 1, 2017.

This year, UDW family child care providers have united to urge California lawmakers to fix the child care crisis. Parents who need a safe and reliable place to take their kids while they work are struggling to access affordable quality care. And because of low rates, family child care providers are barely making enough money to keep our daycares open.

One of our major priorities this year was a real investment in child care in the state budget. Together, we strategized in our monthly meetings and made calls to our elected leaders urging them to support a budget proposal that would put hundreds of millions of dollars into the child care system.

And this week, we won!

The legislature passed a budget that invests an estimated $528 million in child care and early education programs. Of the $528 million, a majority of the funding will be used to increase subsidy reimbursement rates over the next two years. The increase in rates will make it easier for us to afford the increased wage we must pay our assistants due to the recent state minimum wage increase.

The budget deal:

The budget is now headed to Governor Brown’s desk to be signed before June 30th.

But our work is not yet done. Lawmakers can do more this year to make child care affordable and accessible to parents, and to stabilize our daycares. We will continue to urge the legislature to pass Assembly Bill 2150, which will:

This year and beyond, UDW child care providers will continue to organize and build power, so that we can fix California’s child care crisis together.