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Martinez: Governor failed to protect child care workers

martinez 42016SPRINGFIELD — In an effort to ensure Gov. Bruce Rauner doesn’t further damage the state’s child care system, Majority Caucus Whip Iris Y. Martinez (D-Chicago) passed legislation to the governor’s desk that protects health care benefits for home child care providers.

Today, the governor vetoed this measure.

“I am frustrated, but not surprised, that the governor doesn’t want to safeguard benefits of child care workers,” Martinez said. “The employees who serve our children and families deserve to have their health care benefits protected.”

The Illinois Department of Human Services already provides health insurance to qualified child care providers. However, Martinez sponsored her legislation because of concern that the Rauner administration wanted to eliminate health insurance for child care employees.

These concerns follow the cuts the governor made last year to the state’s Child Care Assistance Program.

Ninety-nine percent of the 3,500 workers that would be protected under Martinez’s proposal are women.

Martinez’s legislation that was vetoed also would have updated training requirements for child care providers to ensure Illinois is compliant with new federal guidelines.

Martinez worked on Senate Bill 2536 with the Service Employees International Union.

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