Jill Stein, who is seeking the Green Party nomination for President, said today that she would go further than Hillary Clinton and enact a universal child care program.
“It is long past time for the US to guarantee quality child care for all Americans. The lack of access to universal child care is a major factor in the feminization of poverty,” noted Dr. Stein.
“We need to help children while stopping the financial penalty of motherhood. Parents should be able to decide what is the best way to provide care for their children. As a percent of their income, low wage women with children under six pay a wage penalty five times greater than higher wage women with young children. The lack of universal child care is a major factor in high poverty rates for both children and women,” stated Stein.
In 31 states, child care presently costs more than public college.
The Universal Child Care Benefit (UCCB) in Canada provides a monthly benefit to help all Canadian families with young children choose the child care option that best suits their needs, whether they work outside the home for pay or stay at home with their children. The national government also provides funding to support the creation of child care centers, and a tax credit to businesses that create child care spaces in the workplace. The cost of the program is $4.5 billion. The US population is about 9 times as large.
Canada will significantly expand the program this summer.
Congress passed a universal child care program in 1971 but it was vetoed by President Nixon.