Mayor Adams Signs Package of Seven Child Care Bills
Nov 10, 2022 - 02:33 AM
NEW YORK – New York City Mayor Eric Adams today signed a package of seven bills to provide support for mothers, working parents, caregivers, and families in New York City. Specifically, two of the bills — Intros 485-A and 487-A — fulfill commitments from Mayor Adams’ “Accessible, Equitable, High-Quality, Affordable: A Blueprint for Child Care & Early Education in New York City,” by establishing a portal for accessible child care subsidies and a directory of child care programs in the city.
“From the beginning of our administration, we have fought for greater access to child care and investments in early education to support New York City families. When we announced our child care blueprint, we said that we were going to tackle our child care needs head on and make sure that we provide services and support to those who need our help the most. Today, we are signing a package of seven child care bills to reaffirm our administration’s commitment to our city’s families and children and to say to working mothers and families that you are not alone,” said Mayor Adams. “Raising a family in New York City should not be impossible, and today we are providing families with the support so of an entire city in helping to raise their children. We know that nothing holds back opportunities or success at work more than lack of child care in this city, so this slate of legislation will even the playing field by supporting mothers and families.”
“For our city to move forward with a strong equitable recovery, we must invest in our working families and today’s bill signing sends a signal to New Yorkers that we are ‘Getting Stuff Done’ for our city’s families,” said Deputy Mayor of Strategic Initiatives Sheena Wright. “While it takes a village to raise a child, it takes a city to create a comprehensive early childhood education and child care program. Thank you to all of the elected officials, organizations, and advocates that pushed for these resources to help make this package of legislation possible.”
Under the child care blueprint released earlier this year, the Adams administration committed to cutting red tape and alleviating the frustrations of the application process for families by launching a new application portal designed specifically for child care — allowing families to navigate this process more easily. The portals will ensure greater accessibility and transparency to allow the average parent to identify the right child care locations and access child care subsidies.
Intro. 242-A — sponsored by New York City Councilmember Jennifer Gutiérrez — would require the creation of a Marshall Plan for Moms Task Force to study and develop recommendations to support working mothers, parents, and caregivers. The task force would be required to submit a report with its recommendations within one year of the task force’s first meeting, which would be posted to the Commission on Gender Equity (CGE)’s website within 10 days of submission.
Intro. 477-A — sponsored by New York City Councilmember Crystal Hudson — would establish a child care task force to study how to make child care more affordable, how to make it more accessible for families in the city, and how to provide support and funding to child care.
Intro. 485-A — sponsored by New York City Councilmember Julie Menin — would require the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene to coordinate with the New York City Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications, now known as the New York City Office of Technology and Innovation, to create and maintain an online website with a directory of child care programs in the city to allow the average parent identify the right child care locations for their children.
Intro. 486-A — sponsored by New York City Councilmember Julie Menin — would establish a child care advisory board, which would be responsible for conducting studies on and issuing reports related to child care in the city.
Intro. 487-A — sponsored by New York City Councilmember Julie Menin — would require an agency or office designated by the mayor — in collaboration with the New York City Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications, now known as the New York City Office of Technology and Innovation — and any other relevant agency or office to create and maintain a publicly accessible online portable regarding child care subsidies.
Intro. 488-A — sponsored by New York City Councilmember Julie Menin — would require an administering agency designated by the mayor to establish a three-year child care grant pilot program by July 1, 2023.
Intro. 489-A — sponsored by New York City Councilmember Julie Menin — would require the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene to develop guidance for owners of real property regarding the facility requirements for a child care program and make such guidance available on its website.
“Our families deserve services and programs that make raising a child in our great city easier,” said New York City Department of Education Chancellor David C. Banks. “Nothing should stand between working parents and caregivers, least of all a lack of access to safe, reliable child care, and I’m thankful to Mayor Adams for focusing on the needs of our working families and opening doors of opportunity for generations of New Yorkers to come.”
“High-quality, affordable child care helps parents pursue career and educational opportunities while ensuring their children are in safe, nurturing environments that promote their healthy development. We want families across the city with limited incomes to know that they can apply for child care assistance today,” said New York City Administration for Children’s Services Commissioner Jess Dannhauser. “We appreciate the City Council’s partnership and collaboration in our efforts to increase child care access for families and to support providers. We look forward to working together to implement this new legislation.”
“Child care is a necessity for all families and should be assessed within the broader context of families’ everyday lives, especially as we transition through the COVID-19 pandemic,” said New York City Commission on Gender Equity Executive Director Jacqueline M. Ebanks. “Combined, these bills and the mayor’s child care blueprint will ensure that New York City builds a strong and sustainable infrastructure to support workers in this critical industry and provide safe, affordable, and readily accessible child care services for all families in the city.”
“Support for families leads to healthier children, mentally and physically,” said New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene Commissioner Dr. Ashwin Vasan. “Access to child care alleviates stress and can improve mental health of caregivers, which has ripple effects for the entire family, including allowing parents and caregivers the time and space to pursue social and economic security for their children. These bills are really health and mental health bonds for our children: Investments today that will pay off for years to come in their well-being, and that will serve to make New York City a fairer and healthier place to live for families.”
“High-quality, affordable child care must be made available to all New Yorkers, especially our most vulnerable families who are all too often forced to choose between caring for their child or going to work,” said New York City Department of Social Services Commissioner Gary P. Jenkins. “We are incredibly thankful for the sponsors of these bills and this administration as they continue to fight for working families, caregivers, and children. We look forward to continuing this good work and participating in future task forces and discussions about improving access to child care.”
“The Adams administration’s child care blueprint will improve the lives of parents, caregivers, and children in New York City,” said New York City Chief Technology Officer and Office of Technology and Innovation Commissioner Matthew C. Fraser. “The Office of Technology and Innovation is honored to help build the technology to advance this historic effort, and is grateful to the City Council for its support.”
“As the first women-majority Council in New York City history, we fully understand that child care remains one of the biggest challenges facing working women and families,” said New York City Council Speaker Adrienne Adams. “The Council has always prioritized advancing solutions to support our communities, including the expansion of affordable, high-quality, and accessible child care on a universal basis. Now that this groundbreaking legislative package has been signed into law, our city will deliver the help and care that families need while boosting our economy. I thank the bill sponsors for their leadership and all my colleagues who support our efforts to move towards accessible child care for all New Yorkers.”
“Today marks a historic moment in New York City in which enacting the Universal Child Care Act will situate New York City as the first city in the country to implement universal childcare. It is tragic that over 375,000 parents were pushed out of the workforce in recent years because families and caretakers cannot afford child care. Universal child care will lessen the gender inequality gap as we’re giving back the choice to mothers to return or stay in the workforce as women are disproportionately affected by the child care crisis,” said New York City Councilmember Julie Menin. “As a mother of four, I am thrilled that Mayor Adams has signed my package of child care bills into law. New York City is setting a precedent across the nation that universal child care will be realized and that parents will no longer have to choose between their career and child care.”
“The prohibitive costs of child care hurt our communities, stifling the growth of local economies, hindering our efforts to close the gender wage gap, and preventing our youngest students from receiving vital early childhood education.” said New York City Councilmember Crystal Hudson. “With the passage of Int. 477, we’re taking a historic step toward guaranteeing child care for all and meaningfully and tangibly addressing the lingering effects of the pandemic felt disproportionately by women –– and women of color, in particular –– across the five boroughs. Universal child care will help narrow this persistent gap, ushering more women back into the workforce and ensuring parents do not have to choose between their families and their careers. As part of my Black Agenda for New York City, I called for a universal child care system in New York City. And I’m proud to have delivered on that promise and worked to ensure the Council follows through as well.”
“New York City is in the midst of a childcare crisis, which means that women and caregivers are experiencing an economic crisis, forced to make a difficult choice between loss of income or the inability to meet other household needs,” said New York City Councilmember Jennifer Gutiérrez. “Enabling caregivers to return to the workforce by ensuring their children are cared for safely and affordably is crucial to ensure the recovery of our economy. While this package of bills does not solve all of the problems parents and providers face today, they are a signal that this council and administration is serious about addressing the economy of care and is taking the first steps towards a true vision of universal child care.”
“The signing of this legislation package represents a victory for working families throughout our city. Child care is essential, and with today’s bill package signing, the City Council and the mayor are demonstrating their commitment to our city’s families and young people,” said New York City Councilmember Rita Joseph, chair, Committee on Education. “I thank Mayor Adams, Councilmember Jennifer Gutiérrez, Councilmember Crystal Hudson, Councilmember Julie Menin, and Speaker Adams for their work to pass these bills into law.”
“Parents and caregivers are often left out of the workforce because of the lack of child care,” said New York City Councilmember Lynn Schulman, chair, Committee on Health. “This series of bills will make child care more accessible and provide much needed support for our communities.”
“Union Settlement applauds the city’s vision for child care and early childhood education and thanks the Adams administration and New York City Council for its investment in our children, families and workforce,” said Union Settlement Chief Executive Officer Jennifer Geiling. “Increased availability and easy access to childcare will put young children and families on the road to greater opportunity. Union Settlement looks forward to continuing its partnership with the city of New York to deliver high quality child care and early childhood education in East Harlem.”