As a presidential candidate, Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts) was famous for “having a plan for that.”

And while her presidential bid has ended, she still has another vital plan: A $50 billion plan to bailout child care.

Based in part on her personal experience, Warren is a powerful advocate who understands the personal and economic importance of child care.

Last month, Warren shared the need for this wise investment in a Boston Globe op-ed she coauthored.

This week, a Medium article that Warren co-wrote with Senator Tina Smith (D-Minnesota) plainly says, “Here’s the stark truth: when the time comes, we will not be able to rebuild our economy if this country’s child care system has collapsed beneath the economic burden of this pandemic.”

“Meanwhile,” a Vox article about the senators’ position says, “parents are left wondering whether their children’s care providers will even be in business when the pandemic is over, making child care possibly harder to find and more expensive than before.”

This risk is real. As the senators say in their Medium article:

“When the economy can start to safely get back on track, millions of parents will not be able to return to work or reopen their own small businesses if they cannot find safe, affordable, and reliable care for their children. And if child care providers must close their doors for months, we risk permanently reducing the supply of child care in this country.”

So far, Congress has “provided only $3.5 billion in emergency funding to child care in the CARES Act,” the two senators write. “While this was a critical first step, child care is a $99 billion a year industry with over 2 million paid workers. State child care officials and local providers are in need of substantially more assistance if they are to weather this crisis.”

A $50 billion investment, which would be distributed through the Child Care Development Block Grant, would be spent in three ways:

• to keep emergency child care in place for frontline and essential workers

• to keep child care providers in business and all child care workers on payroll, and

• to make long-term investments that would prepare the child care industry to provide high-quality programs once Americans go back to work

Senators Smith and Warren also include this personal perspective:

“When we were young moms, our kids were always our first priority — only when we knew they were safe and cared for, could we then become working moms and fully participate in the economy. Our country was in need of a massive federal investment in child care before this coronavirus pandemic, which is why we introduced universal child care legislation or co-sponsored legislation to provide access to and improve early learning and care before this crisis.”

They conclude:

“We have a bold plan to save child care and ensure that it can be an active engine in our economic recovery. We are prepared to fight in Congress to save this system from collapse and strengthen it for the challenges ahead.”

Please join this effort. Let your Congressional leaders know how important high-quality early education and care is to children, to families, to the economy, and to the nation’s long-term prosperity. Ask them to invest in this badly needed $50 billion plan.