There is a HUGE disparity between what parents can afford to pay for child care and what it costs to provide high-quality child care.
To reduce the gap, Iowa needs to:
- Increase eligibility for the Child Care Assistance (CCA) program to 200% of the federal poverty level through a tiered co-pay system using state investments and new federal Child Care and Development Block Grant funding
- Stabilize the child care provider market.
“I got a raise…It basically took away all of our child care assistance. [Child care] went from $70 to $600 a month …. It can get discouraging.”
- Stephen Williams, Oak Academy, Des Moines
Eliminating the cliff effect is a priority of the Opportunity Plan.
Over the past year, community members have come together to develop and refine the Central Iowa OpportUNITY Community Plan to take action against poverty in central Iowa.
The plan's goal is to have a realistic game plan of actions, big and small, that can bring financial stability and prosperity to the one-third of central Iowans who live in or near poverty.