Cuts to California Childcare Services Hurt Poor says New Report

CPR Photo/Max Pringle
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A new report says years of cuts to state child care and early education programs have hurt low income Californians. The California Budget Project says funding for those programs is down significantly from a few years ago.

The Budget Project study says funding cuts since the start of the Great Recession in 2007-08, have gutted programs like CalWORKs child care.

“The funding has decreased by about 40 percent,” says the Project’s Hope Richardson, who co-authored the report. “That’s translated into over 100,000 spaces for children in the system that have been lost.”

The report estimates that childcare expenses can amount to nearly half of household expenses for low-income families. Hope Richardson says the lack of low-cost child care can also hinder people looking for work.

“Often it can help parents who are searching for a job if they know that they’re able to have their child taken care of and that that will be affordable,” she says.

Among possible solutions, the report recommends repealing the fee parents must pay for part-day state pre-school and increasing funding to help eligible parents who are on state childcare waiting lists. 

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