TOMMY G. THOMPSON
TOMMY G. THOMPSON
State of Wisconsin
For Immediate Release August 24, 1998
Contact: Kevin Keane (608) 266-8110
GOVERNOR ANNOUNCES CHILD CARE CAMPAIGNS
WAUSAU Gov. Tommy G. Thompson today announced the launching of two statewide education campaigns to help working parents with limited incomes make good decisions about child care.
Gov. Thompson said the first campaign alerts families to child care subsidies now available. "Wisconsin Shares Child Care Help When It Counts" targets working parents whose limited incomes sometimes make paying for quality child care a challenge.
"All parents should have access to quality child care and were making that possible in Wisconsin," Gov. Thompson said. "We want to make sure working parents are aware of the child care programs available to them."
The multimedia campaign uses various techniques to reach working parents. A radio public service announcement, brochure and poster are being distributed and made available. In addition, W-2 agencies and a variety of other groups will continue to make information about the subsidies available to their clients and child care providers.
"We want news of these subsidies to reach every eligible family in Wisconsin," said Linda Stewart, secretary of the Department of Workforce Development. It is estimated that more than 200,000 Wisconsin children, from newborns to 12-year-olds, qualify for the child care subsidy program.
Families whose gross income doesnt exceed 165 percent of the poverty line ($22,524 for a family of three) qualify for a child care subsidy so that they pay a portion of their child care costs based on family size, income and the number of children in subsidized care. There are also non-financial eligibility standards. Parents must be working, attending high school (if under the age of 20), or actively seeking work. Other families are also eligible based on specific circumstances, and W-2 is not a condition of receiving subsidies.
Gov. Thompson said the second public service campaign offers advice on selecting quality child care, including step-by-step processes and guidelines on what to look for in a quality child-care setting. "Child Care Choices" was developed in collaboration with Community Coordinated Child Care (4-C), an advocacy group recognized for its commitment to promoting quality child care.
"Just knowing what questions to ask or what things to look for when visiting a child care provider can make a world of difference for families," said Stewart. "This campaign gives people the information they need to make a better-educated decision about their childs care."
The campaign uses a variety of methods to share information on critical issues in choosing child care. A series of brochures offers tips and guidelines for understanding differences between child care providers and for choosing the child care provider that is right for the parent and the child. The importance of making an educated decision is reinforced by an informational video, radio spots, and poster.
Parents who would like information on child care subsidies or selecting a local child care provider are encouraged to contact Wisconsins network of Child Care Resource and Referral agencies toll-free at 888/713-KIDS (5437). To apply for a child care subsidy, families should contact their local Job Center, W-2 agency or tribal agency.