Washington, D.C. - Today, Congresswoman Elise Stefanik, Congressman Josh Harder (D-CA), and Congresswoman Ashley Hinson (R-IA) reintroduced bipartisan legislation to make it easier for employers to provide child care and dependent care assistance to their workers. This would be accomplished by eliminating a burdensome regulatory barrier that currently discourages employers from offering these benefits to their employees.
The Empowering Employer Child and Elder Care Solutions Act would:
- Reduce the cost and regulatory burden for employers seeking to offer child or dependent care assistance,
- Align the treatment of these pro-family benefits with other employer-provided benefits, and
- Expand access to care for working families without mandates or new federal spending.
“I am proud to be reintroducing The Empowering Employer Child and Elder Care Solutions Act to make it easier for hardworking Upstate New York families to access care for dependent children and seniors in their lives while they earn a living. Child and elder care assistance is just as important as other employer-provided benefits, and there should be no reason as to why accessibility to these critical benefits is fraught with excessive regulatory practices,” stated Congresswoman Stefanik.
“Working families here in the Central Valley deserve access to safe, affordable care for their kids and elderly loved ones who depend on them,” said Congressman Harder. “I’m proud to introduce this bipartisan bill to make sure workers across the Valley have the support they need so they can focus on earning a living while knowing their families are being cared for.”
“Expanding access to child care is one of the top issues I hear about from working families and small businesses alike. I’m proud to work with Congresswoman Stefanik – a fellow working mom – to improve access to affordable, quality child care options for Iowans,” stated Congresswoman Ashley Hinson.
“Child care is a major obstacle for recruiting and retaining employees,” said Linda Smith, Director of the Bipartisan Policy Center’s Early Childhood Initiative. “Unfortunately, current regulations disincentivize employers from helping working families with child care. BPC applauds Representatives Stefanik (R-NY-21), Harder (D-CA-09), and Hinson (R-IA-02) for their common sense, bipartisan solution, the Empowering Employer Child and Elder Care Solutions Act, which removes a major barrier for businesses and workers, supporting American families.”
“Having a comprehensive approach to ease access to child care will benefit North Country families and, in turn, employers as well,” said North Country North Country Workforce Development Board Executive Director, Sylvie Nelson. “Child care is a workforce development issue and when one of the component of having a job is too expensive for individuals to afford, those individuals remain outside the workplace which is detrimental to not only our employers but our communities. We applaud Congresswoman Stefanik for recognizing the present system is not working and for bringing solutions that will make a difference in the North Country.”
“The leadership shown by Representatives Stefanik and Harder in drafting this legislation underscores that care is not a partisan issue. Families are buckling under the challenges of finding and affording care and employer support is critical. After all, without care, people can’t work. Lasting and meaningful change to our nation’s care infrastructure will only come when all parties – families, government and employers – work together. This measure shows what’s possible when we do and Care.com applauds the work and guidance of Conference Chair Stefanik for introducing the Empowering Employer Child and Elder Care Solutions Act,” stated Tim Allen, CEO of Care.com.
"We thank Representatives Stefanik, Harder, and Hinson for introducing legislation that would ease dependent care burdens on workers and their families," said Emily M. Dickens, SHRM Chief of Staff and Head of Public Affairs. "At a time when so many Americans are navigating the challenges of fulfilling their work obligations while managing care for their loved ones, Congress has the opportunity to make a real and lasting difference. By correctly classifying on-site dependent care benefits, one key obstacle will be removed in our larger effort to support employers, workers and families."