The Michigan Senate recently approved a bipartisan proposal Rep. Julie Calley helped sponsor to improve access to affordable child care in Michigan.
Calley, of Portland, said the measures provide the flexibility needed to help providers start – and stay in – business while continuing to prioritize the safety of Michigan children.
“For many families, finding a child care provider they can trust and afford is next to impossible. It’s a situation that often keeps parents from returning to the workplace,” Calley said. “The changes we’ve proposed will eliminate government red tape and create an atmosphere where child-care businesses can succeed and families have access to safe, reliable and affordable services.”
State research has shown that 75 percent of children in Michigan live in areas with limited access to child care. In addition, 10 Michigan counties do not currently have licensed slots at centers that serve children younger than 30 months.
A 2019 report by the National Center on Early Childhood Quality Assurance detailed the key factors that have led to the decreasing number of in-home providers across the country, finding an extensive number of regulations, start-up and operational expenses, and low compensation rates for providers to be the main barriers.
House Bills 5041-48 include common-sense regulatory reforms that will:
- Offer enhanced reporting requirements and more concise regulation to let high-quality providers thrive while bad actors are held accountable.
- Expand access in areas where families live and work by offering a safe path for providers to utilize multi-use buildings.
- Help parents access health and safety information by allowing providers to share certain records online.
The plan will soon advance to the governor’s desk for consideration as a new state law.