On Thursday, June 4, 2020, Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) introduced a companion to Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) the Child Care is Essential Act that would provide $50 billion in child care funding as part of the fifth or next COVID-19 bill.

CWLA has endorsed Senator Murray’s bill which is co-sponsored by Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR0, Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Tina Smith (D-MN), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Bob Casey (D-PA), Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Tim Kaine (D-VA), Jacky Rosen(D-NV), Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Tammy Baldwin (D-WS), Doug Jones (D-AL), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Jack Reed (D-RI), Brian Schatz (D-HA), Cory Booker (D-NJ), and Mazie Hirono (D-HA).

In early March and again in April, CWLA signed onto a child care coalition letter that praised Congress for an initial $3.5 billion in pandemic funding but said, “Because child care is a $99 billion industry, much larger and ongoing investments will be needed to preserve the child care system so that it works for children, families, educators, businesses, and our nation’s economy. Child care’s essential status demands dedicated relief that acknowledges the unique needs of a system that was already teetering on the edge of financial viability before this pandemic. Specifically, we request that Congress provide at least $50 billion in total funding dedicated to child care to offer immediate relief to providers, educators, and families during this crisis.”

Over 80 organizations have endorsed the legislation.