Sunday, March 7, 2010

Update on Child Care Advocacy Day

By Klara Kang

What an experience! I must say I enjoyed the trip very much. We had two buses full of students and staff from all CUNY colleges wanting to make a difference. Our day started bright and early—our buses took off from the city at 7am and our first appointment was scheduled for 11am. There were eight appointments scheduled throughout the day with different senators and assemblymen. Our big group split into three smaller ones, to make sure we didn’t miss any appointments. We visited the offices of the following legislators:

Assemblyman Brian Kolb—Assembly Minority Leader
Senator Toby Ann Stavisky—Senate Higher Education Committee chair
Assemblyman Jose Peralta—Member of the Higher Education Committee
Assemblyman Herman Farrell Jr.—Assembly Ways and Means Committee chair
Assemblywoman Debra Glick—Assembly Higher Education Committee chair
Assemblyman Sheldon Silver—Speaker of the House
Assemblyman Ron Canestrari—Majority Leader
Assemblyman William Scarborugh—Assembly Children and Families Committee chair
Senator Velmanette Montgomery—Senate Children and Family Services committee chair
Senator Carl Kruger—Senate Finance Committee chair

After a brief presentation of our case (Restore $1.44 million to CUNY Child Care!), each student-parent had a chance to share their story about how important it is for them to have an on-campus daycare. I heard many moving personal statements from fellow students, and make no mistake: The staffers were taking notes and seemed to be genuinely interested to hear our stories! Over and over we were told that it is good for them to “connect the numbers to actual faces” and they will work hard to keep the money in CUNY.

If you missed the trip, don’t worry—you still have time to make YOUR voice heard! Go to: http://www.supportcuny.org/ and sign on to the Child Care Letter. There are links to an automated system where you can send letters to state legislators to support the entire University, your College, and CUNY’s Child Care Centers. Furthermore, you can sign our petition which is taped to the door in MB-46 (The Honors House). PLEASE ACT NOW!

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