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Support child care workers

Take action in support of Washington’s child care workforce

Tacoma-based Child Care Aware of Washington (CCA) recently gathered child care educators from around the state to discuss solutions to the state’s current child care crisis. The organization’s agenda for the upcoming 2023 session of the Washington State Legislature grew from that conversation.

The organization announced it’s goals for the legislative session, which begins January 9, this week.

A workforce in crisis

According to CCA, child care workers continue to struggle from the economic impacts of pandemic losses, especially as federal and state relief programs sunset. The advocacy organization estimates that Washington lost 10% of its child care workforce in the first two years of the pandemic.  The poverty rate among child care workers in Washington is high as workers rank in the third percentile of all occupational wages statewide. 

Child Care Aware’s agenda pushes lawmakers to pass the state Department of Children, Youth and Families request for new funding and policies in 2023 as well as recommendations of the Child Care Collaborative Task Force which was launched in 2018 to address questions of high worker turn over and low quality in child care settings

Keep moving forward

“Washington’s legislature has taken bold and impactful steps towards building one of the best child care systems in the nation.” says CCA of Washington’s Director of Policy and Advocacy Ryan Pricco. “The Early Start act created effective quality assurance for families and the Fair Start for Kids Act provided critical relief to families struggling to afford child care. 

“However, the COVID-19 pandemic has laid bare that these bolstered pillars can’t realize their full potential without a strong base to support, and for child care, that base is our workforce,” says Pricco. “Solutions called forth by DCYF’s decision package and the early educator legislative agenda provide the most effective vehicles for the legislature to continue building on our progress and stabilize a child care workforce that our state’s economy so heavily relies upon.”

2023 agenda for lawmakers

Child Care Aware of Washington’s 2023 legislative agenda has four points:

Take action

To learn more and take action toward stabilizing the Washington child care workforce by sending a personal message to lawmakers, go to the Child Care Aware of Washington website action page.

About the Author

Cheryl Murfin

Cheryl Murfin is managing editor at Seattle's Child. She is also a certified doula, lactation educator for and a certified AWA writing workshop facilitator at