Press Release: Jaime Harrison: Leaders Must Fix COVID Child Care Crisis

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Columbia, S.C. — Jaime Harrison, Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate, today called on state and federal leaders to address the shortage of affordable child care options for working parents, as more than 1,000 facilities in South Carolina either remain closed or have shut their doors permanently due to COVID-19. Some South Carolina workers are returning to their jobs as the state continues to break new daily case records, a sign that more difficulty lies ahead for these child care centers. 

“Working families in South Carolina already had major problems accessing affordable child care, but this crisis has made this situation far worse,” Harrison said. “While schools close down, two thirds of this state are now in ‘child care deserts,’ as over 1,000 facilities either remain closed or have shut down permanently. This shortage is an indictment of the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program, which was designed to keep places like child care centers open but instead has funnelled taxpayer money towards hundreds of publicly traded companies. South Carolina has ranked dead-last in the country in PPP funds received per worker, and now we see that our state’s children are suffering as a result. Our leadership in Washington should be fighting for these PPP dollars to reach the establishments that need them most. With cases spiking throughout the state, these vital child care centers need the support of their elected officials.”

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