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Rallies held across Connecticut push for more child care funding and support

Courtesy of Office of U.S. Rep Johana Hayes
Educators and parents in New Britain, Connecticut, stage a walk out to pressure the state for more childcare resources and requirements for higher worker pay.

Educators and parents across Connecticut staged a walkout to rally for more child care resources.

The event was called a “Morning Without ChildCare.”

For two hours, hundreds of advocates called on lawmakers to provide more funding for an industry they claim is having a statewide crisis.

Katherine Lantigua organized one of the rallies at the Seaside Park Playground in Bridgeport. She said the little amount of money she makes has created a conflict to properly maintain two daycare centers she owns.

“I can’t stop paying the only employee that I have that has been with me through ups and downs for two years because she also has her family that she has to support,” said Lantigua.

Ally Schiavone, director of Friends Center for Children in New Haven, and organizer of a rally in the city’s downtown area, said childcare centers such as hers are short-staffed.

“We’ve had enough," Schiavone said. “We’ve specifically asked the governor and the legislatures to infuse our industry with $700 million so that we can increase wages for employees and for childcare workers. We’re also asking to decrease the cost for families so providers can stay in business.”

A new bill that focuses on the issue is expected to be introduced in the state Senate on Friday.

Mike Lyle is a former reporter and host at WSHU.