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Reps. Smith and Spartz Introduce Bill to Improve Federal Child Care Programs

June 11, 2021
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Adrian Smith (R-NE) and Congresswoman Victoria Spartz (R-IN) introduced the Increasing Access to Safe Child Care Facilities Act of 2021, which will give states greater flexibility to utilize available funds to improve and increase the availability of safe child care facilities, especially in rural areas.

This bill streamlines the uses of child care stabilization funds, ensuring more children have access to safe child care facilities, more facilities are able to offer services at non-traditional hours, and child care facilities will be equipped with new resources to serve infants and children with disabilities. Parents will also have more options for child care, allowing them to return to work and drive our economy forward.

“Access to child care in rural areas presents a major impediment to connecting working parents with jobs that need to be filled,” said Rep. Smith. “I am glad to introduce this legislation that eliminates barriers and allows for the dedication of federal funds to expand the availability of child care to best meet communities’ unique needs, especially across rural Nebraska.”

“As a working mom of two young girls, I understand the importance of child care, especially when it comes to engaging more women in the workforce. This is a very important issue for our state given the significant labor shortages that are impacting businesses,” said Rep. Spartz. “Many federal government programs come with extensive strings, which make them very expensive and inefficient. This bill allows more flexibility to the states to improve effectiveness and provide a greater benefit to Hoosiers.”

The bill is one of several child care proposals introduced as part of a joint collaboration between Ways and Means Committee and Education and Labor Committee Republicans.