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Letters to the Editor

Iowa legislature deserves thanks

As a mother, I have found it extremely difficult to find quality, affordable childcare for my seven-year-old son. I was undoubtedly pleased to see the Iowa House of Representatives pass the five bills related to chi9ldcare access. HF 2270, 2271, 2424, 2485 and 2600. These bills will not only help grow the childcare workforce in areas that suffer from the childcare desert crisis, but it will also increase reimbursement rates for providers, address the cliff effect so that families aren’t penalized for earning a raise or receiving a promotion. 

Six years ago, I struggled with being a single mother and trying to take care of my son off of minimum wage. I had to leave the job that I loved to find a better-paying job to be able to afford the cost of living. With the benefit of receiving a $1 an hour raise, I was then told that I no longer qualified for childcare assistance. This made it extremely difficult for me to make ends meet as I was back to where I was before, struggling with finances. Had these policies been passed in the senate and put into effect during that time, I wouldn’t have had to quit the job that I loved or lost my childcare assistance. My life would have been very different. I applaud the Iowa legislature for taking up the childcare issue so that more families can contribute to the economy and know their children are safe.

Jessica Balk

Newton

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