SB22-213 (Fields & Sonnenberg/ Valdez A. & Tipper) Child Care Support Programs
This bill appropriates $100 million to child care program development, expansion, and recovery – including investments in capacity, workforce, and diverse systems of delivery. It also establishes the family, friend, and neighbor (FFN) support programs, including an advisory group and training program. In addition, the Department of Early Childhood shall make existing state programs, including home visitation, early intervention, and family resource center services, available to the FFN community.
The Children’s Campaign supports this bill. The pandemic has only exacerbated longstanding obstacles faced by our early childhood workforce. This bill would provide much needed funding to aid in the sector’s recovery, while also ensuring our youngest Coloradans are receiving the high-quality care they need to thrive. In addition, this bill recognizes the critical role that FFNs serve in providing invaluable care to children across our state. By offering trusted, accessible, and culturally competent care, FFNs have been essential in allowing families to stay afloat during the pandemic. As the cost and availability of child care continue to burden families, it is critical that our state gives FFN providers the support they need, as well as recognize them as essential contributors to the early care and education system.
The bill passed unanimously out of the Senate Health and Human Services Committee and Appropriations, heading now for the Senate floor.