April 12, 2019
City Council’s Budget Response Advances Important Issues
Since Mayor de Blasio released his Preliminary Budget for Fiscal Year 2020 in February and signaled his plans to cut funding for key programs impacting children, our advocates have showed up for multiple rallies at City Hall, our staff have testified in front of City Council, and our supporters have written emails to city leaders.
The work is paying off.
On April 9th, the City Council released its Response to the 2020 Preliminary Budget. Among the important priorities included, the response recommends key funding to address pay inequity among early childhood education teachers, better support for children experiencing homelessness, investments in after-school and summer programs, and help to ensure a fair and accurate count in the 2020 Census.
While far from an exhaustive list of all the policy items we are advocating for, below is a summary of issues included in the City Council’s response that we’ve asked you to support by writing letters, attending rallies, and calling your elected officials. We will need your continued support to make sure these and other items make it into the Executive Budget and are ultimately included in the 2020 Adopted Budget.
Early Childhood Education Salary Parity
Alongside our Campaign for Children partners, we have been advocating for equal pay among early childhood educators and applaud the City Council for including $89 million as a first step towards full parity for the early childhood workforce. Specifically, this investment would lift the salaries of certified lead teachers and directors in community-based early education programs and would allow a targeted increase in compensation to essential staff such as cooks, janitors, book keepers and assistant teachers. This is the beginning of achieving equitable compensation as the contract for this workforce is set to open again in September 2020.
Bridging the Gap funding
As budget negotiations between the Council and the Mayor begin, we, along with our Family Homelessness Coalition partners, will continue pushing for an overall increase in school social workers and ensure schools educating displaced students receive the funding they need.
Summer programming and after school
This year is no different. The Mayor cut funding for 34,000 middle school students from his 2020 Preliminary Budget, and the City Council has included funding to protect critical summer programming.
Moreover, this year, the council has taken an additional step by recommending the summer programming funding be baselined in the budget; this would eliminate the uncertainty that service providers and families face when funding for summer programming is in question. CCC and its Campaign for Children partners have been advocating for baselined summer programming funding for several years, and we look forward to continuing to champion this important resource for middle schoolers.
2020 Census Outreach
Stay tuned for opportunities to get involved as budget negotiations continue.