MANHATTAN – Being a parent in NYC is a costly endeavor. Child care alone is on average more than $21,000 per year for an infant— a price out of reach to many families on the Upper East Side. Now, New York City is moving closer to becoming the first major city to adopt comprehensive legislation for Universal Childcare, as a City Council committee held a hearing on the package of bills introduced by UES Council Member Julie Menin earlier this month.
“The needs of parents and guardians, of childcare workers, of childcare providers are being unmet,” said Menin.
“As a mother of four and a working mom, I know the importance of childcare and the City can and must do better to help make childcare affordable and equitable,” she added.
While testifying today before the Committee for Women and Gender Equity, a representative from Mayor Eric Adams’ administration signaled their support for the measures, which would establish a new child care advisory board, create a new online childcare directory as well as a subsidy portal for moms and dads.
“Parents and caregivers should not have to navigate complex bureaucracy to give their children care,” said Jacqueline M. Banks, Executive Director of the New York City Commission on Gender Equity.
“We share the same goals as the Council when it comes to expanding access to childcare,” Banks explained during her testimony to the committee Wednesday.
Those three bills also supported by a supermajority of city council members, according to Menin’s Office.
The other two pieces of legislation include grants of up to $20,000 to help keep struggling day care centers open and would create a certified building program to increase the number of day care providers
“To rebuild our city from the pandemic, families need affordable and equitable childcare,” Council Member Menin explained.
“This is one of the wealthiest cities in the world and we need to prioritize working families, small business, childcare workers, and centers in our recovery.”