Friday, May 28, 2010

Sacrificing Women to the Budget Gods

As states scramble to stay afloat — how are they balancing their budgets? On the backs of working women of course. The new big trend is to cut subsidies for child care. And with child care — poof – a critical lifeline to working moms is disappearing. The same states that cut welfare entitlements in the 90s, forcing moms out to work, are now cutting the subsidized child care that was promised in return for workfare.

While the Obama government has provided some aid to states to keep subsidies up, it is not nearly enough, and some states are just calling it quits. In California, Governor Schwarzennegger, whose respect for women is well known, recently proposed to eliminate the entire state welfare and child care program entirely, affecting 1.4 million people, two thirds children.

In some places, Head Start programs that have been in place for five decades, are competing for contributions from hedge funds and running street fairs. Many will have to charge tuition for the first time this September, exactly the opposite of the vision of the program.

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