Mayor Adams Invites More Than 36,000 Families To Apply For Affordable Child Care After Fully Clearing Backlog Waitlist

October 12, 2022

New York City Mayor Eric Adams today announced that the city has successfully cleared the childcare voucher waitlist.

Inviting families of all 36,000 children on the waitlist to apply for affordable and highly-subsidized child care. Earlier this year, Mayor Adams released “Accessible, Equitable, High-Quality, Affordable: A Blueprint for Child Care & Early Education in New York City,” which outlined essential steps to provide high-quality, equitable, and affordable child care for families across New York City, including by increasing access to child care vouchers for low-income families. 

Access to child care is critical for parents to be able to participate in the workforce and for children to receive the developmental, educational, and social benefits they need to thrive. Today’s announcement marks a major milestone — the completion of the Adams administration’s commitment to fully clear the voucher waitlist.

“Earlier this year, we announced our historic blueprint focused on providing greater access to child care and early education as an investment in the future of our children, the future of working families, and the future of our city. Today, we are thrilled to announce that we have completely cleared the child care voucher waitlist, inviting families of all 36,000 children to apply for high-quality and affordable child care in our city,” said Mayor Adams. “By increasing access to child care for thousands of children across the five boroughs, no parent will have to make that hard choice between child care and career growth again.”

“A ‘Blueprint for Childcare & Early Childhood Education in New York City’ works to allow parents, especially parents of color, to progress and allows our youngest New Yorkers to get the setting they deserve,” said Deputy Mayor of Strategic Initiatives Sheena Wright. “Today’s announcement of clearing the child care voucher waitlist of 36,000 children is just the start of this administration’s commitment to New York City children and working families. Together, we are creating a more equitable city for all.”

“Thousands of New York City parents will be able to breathe easier knowing their little ones will be in a nurturing academic environment while they work to take care of their families,” said Deputy Mayor of Health and Human Services Anne Williams-Isom. “Having access to safe, reliable, and affordable child care is a protective factor for every family and developing child. We are hitting a major milestone by clearing the waitlist that will provide vouchers for adequate child care to New York City families. I am proud of this administration’s commitment to providing that opportunity to every one of our youngest New Yorkers and their families.”

“Access to affordable, high-quality child care is a game-changer for families, providing nurturing environments for children to grow and the support parents need to pursue opportunity,” said New York City Administration for Children’s Services (ACS) Commissioner Jess Dannhauser. “We are thrilled to announce that we’ve successfully cleared the voucher waitlist and we invite families all across New York City to apply for much-needed child care assistance. Thank you to Mayor Adams for making access to child care a priority.”

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Mayor Adams also today announced that, beginning next week, ACS will begin accepting child care voucher applications from low-income families across New York City — meaning New Yorkers who need help paying for high-quality child care will be able to apply, no matter where they live. Earlier this year, ACS identified 17 priority community districts with the highest concentrations of poverty and unemployment and prioritized childcare assistance for eligible low-income families in those districts by inviting families from those districts to apply. Now that the waitlist has been cleared, all low-income families will be able to apply and, if eligible, will receive this critical assistance. Families can apply for childcare vouchers by visiting the ACS website.  

After successful advocacy by New York City, the state of New York has raised the income eligibility from 200 percent of the federal poverty level to 300 percent of the federal poverty level. Now, for example, a family of four earning less than $83,250 may be eligible for child care vouchers, compared to a similar family making approximately $55,000 previously.

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