Report: Mayor’s Cuts to Child Care and After-School Will Have Devastating Impact in the Bronx

Report: Mayor’s Cuts to Child Care and After-School Will Have Devastating Impact in the Bronx

Wednesday, April 18th

Queens Elected Officials Join Parents, Children and Advocates at Rally to Save Child Care and After-School


Bronx, NY – With the Mayor’s preliminary budget proposing to cut more than 47,000 children from child care and after-school programs citywide, children attending the Children’s Aid Society’s Bronx Family Center were joined Wednesday by parents, advocates and elected officials urging Mayor Bloomberg to fully fund child care and after-school in his Executive Budget.
At the Bronx Family Center, among just some of the hundreds of Bronx children now at risk of losing access to child care and after-school programs, Campaign for Children released a report detailing the devastating impact Mayor Bloomberg’s proposed cuts would have on Bronx children and working families. Bronx residents have already experienced steep reductions in subsidized child care and after-school programs, and the Mayor’s newest cuts will further reduce the number of safe and affordable options available to working families. Indeed, the Mayor has already announced that the Beacon Program at Phipps Community Development at IS 192 is scheduled to close – where more than 1,300 Bronx residents are served each year. [Read the full report HERE].

Child care: In the past three years, the number of children from low-income working families receiving child care subsidies in the Bronx has declined by nearly 20 percent.[1] The proposed citywide cut of 15,900 child care subsidies will further decrease the availability of child care for low-income working families in the Bronx.

After-school: The Out of School Time (OST) after-school program – which has already shrunk by more than 35,000 youth citywide since 2009[2] – is facing a 43 percent reduction in programs in the Bronx.[3]

[1] ACS Child Care Snapshots, January 2009 & January 2012.
[2] Fiscal Year enrollment data contained in the Mayor’s Management Reports.
[3] DYCD Request for Proposals for the Out of School Time system.

“With my son in child care, I know he’s learning and getting prepared to succeed in school – and it’s the only way I have to make sure he stays active, engaged and safe while I’m at work,” said Carolyn Sanchez, the mother of a child at the Children’s Aid Bronx Early Childhood Center. “This is the positive environment I want my son to grow up in when I can’t be home with him – I don’t know what I would do if it was taken away. Choosing between keeping my job and giving my son the educational opportunities he needs is a choice no hard-working New Yorker should have to make.”

“With the Mayor’s devastating cuts to child care and after-school programs, thousands of Bronx children and working families who rely on these programs will suffer,” said Diana Torres, Director of Bronx After-School Programs at Good Shepherd Services. “Our after-school programs help children get ahead, keeps parents working, and employs hundreds of people in our community. These programs are critical for working families, and cutting them would not only be devastating to our children – it would be an economic disaster for the Bronx.”

“For more than 10 years, we have been working very closely with the South Bronx community, where 57% of children are living in poverty as compared to the citywide rate of 31%, to provide much-needed social and educational services – and there is great demand for more,” says Richard R. Buery, President and CEO of the Children’s Aid Society. “The Mayor’s disinvestment in these programs, which offer a safety net to our city’s most vulnerable children, will be particularly devastating to low-income children and their families in the Bronx.”

“While Mayor Bloomberg continues to claim that education is one of his Administration’s highest priorities, the reality is that for the fifth year in a row, the Mayor has proposed deep cuts to both early childhood education and after-school programs,” said Council Member Annabel Palma, Chair of the Council’s Committee on General Welfare. “In communities like ours in the Bronx, working people depend on these programs to provide safe and affordable child care so that parents can work. Without access to these programs, many of these parents will have to make a tough choice between giving up their jobs to stay at home with their kids, or turning to unregulated and potentially unsafe child care arrangements. In tough economic times, the last thing we should be doing is cutting essential programs that hard-working families need to survive.”

After years of cuts that have dramatically decreased working families’ access to children’s and youth services, the Mayor is once again proposing devastating cuts to both child care and after-school programs in his FY 2013 budget. The Mayor’s Preliminary Budget, coupled with changes from the EarlyLearn NYC and Out-of-school Time (OST) RFPs, would eliminate 15,900 child care slots and slash after-school program capacity for 31,800 children. All told, more than 47,000 children and their families will lose access to these essential programs. This is the fifth straight year that the Mayor has cut child care and after-school programs. Added to year after year of cuts, the Mayor’s latest proposal will result in 90,000 fewer children having access to these programs than in 2009 – a 61% decrease.

The Bloomberg Administration’s failure to fund these core services is a disturbing departure from its stated desire to make education reforms and economic development the Mayor’s top priorities and the foundation of his legacy. As the Mayor himself recently stated, “what happens after the final school bell of the day rings is as important to students as what goes on in the classrooms.” Both child care and after-school programs provide children with critical educational opportunities that pave the way for
future success, and allow parents to maintain jobs and support their families while their children receive safe, affordable care.

The Mayor is taking notable steps to restructure the child care and after-school systems to increase the quality of the programs citywide – but is, at the same time, cutting funding significantly so that the programs will serve a fraction of the children.


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