The results of a new poll from the First Five Years Fund are in:
“The Coronavirus pandemic has opened voters’ eyes to the importance of child care for families—and the economy. Now voters are ready for sweeping federal action,” the Fund explains on its poll fact sheet.
Among the poll’s findings:
• 84% of American voters say high-quality, affordable child care for families with young children is an essential service — just like healthcare and education
• 79% of voters say that the pandemic has made it clear to them how essential a strong child care system is for families who need it, and
• 77% of voters say that public funding for children’s education and care should start before kindergarten
“No longer can lawmakers and candidates for office view child care as a “nice-to-have” service, when voters now clearly see it as something that is essential for children, families, and America’s economy.”
Child care also has bipartisan appeal:
Conducted earlier this month, the poll surveyed 800 voters, 300 of whom live in presidential and Senate election swing states (Arizona, Colorado, Georgia, Iowa, Maine, Michigan, and North Carolina).
“Overwhelming evidence and research show that high-quality early learning and care results in extensive short- and long-term benefits for children – particularly those living in poverty – including increased academic achievement, improved social & emotional development, and lifelong health & economic returns,” the poll’s press release says.
Sarah Rittling, the fund’s executive director, adds that “there is clear evidence that voters across the political spectrum view early learning and child care as smart policy and smart politics, and they feel a sense of urgency for meaningful action from their lawmakers in Washington.”
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