Government Giving $10,000 Checks To D.C. Child Care Workers In Bid To Solve Care Crisis
The money comes from a tax hike on the richest citizens.
Child care workers are considered some of the most underpaid and underappreciated employees out there. The work they do on a day-to-day basis is not only important, but integral. And it seems legislators in D.C. have decided enough is enough. Thousands of child care workers in D.C. are going to be getting checks for $10,000 in an effort to compensate them for their hard work, and that money is coming directly from tax dollars redirected from the city’s richest citizens. And it’s a pretty momentous move on the part of D.C. town council.
As The Washington Post reporte,d In 2021, D.C. councillors voted to raise taxes on the city’s highest earners to the tune of approximately $100 million, and to use that money to offer housing vouchers, give low-income families tax credits, and subsidize the wages of child care employees. According to Indeed, the average child care provider in D.C. makes around $16.80 an hour, and the council agreed that was not enough.
Now council has decided to use $53 million to give those child care workers a raise. Any eligible child care provider who applies will be directly given a check; for child care workers who care for babies and toddlers, these checks will be between $10,000 and $14,000, depending on their position in the child care field. There are more than 3,000 child care providers working in D.C., and hopefully these checks will help subsidize their wages. D.C. council will hire a company to manage the application system for child care workers, and the checks will be given out either in installments or in one lump sum.
“It’s just a breath of relief, and a galvanizing force for us to develop this long-term permanent program so teachers can actually have paychecks that reflect the work that they do,” Ruqiyyah Anbar-Shaheen, a member of the D.C. child care task force told The Washington Post. “I can’t believe we’re here. I’m so glad we’re here. I’m grateful.”
D.C. council’s unanimous decision to reroute funds from the city’s richest to the city’s child care workers is a real step in the right direction. A reminder that access to quality child care is the key to healthy, thriving families. And deserves to be treated as such.