For Missouri parents who make just enough to lose child care subsidy, bill holds hope

For Missouri parents who make just enough to lose childcare subsidy, bill holds hope

When she earned her bachelor’s degree, Meghan Roetto moved her two young daughters from the nice house they shared to a cramped apartment in a neighborhood that wasn’t as safe.

It wasn’t the life she’d imagined her degree earning her.

The problem was that when she graduated, Roetto took a higher-paying job and promptly lost the state child care subsidies she depended on to pay for day care so she could go to work.

Roetto was making slightly too much to qualify. Her new salary wasn’t enough to make up for what she had lost in state support, so she was forced to move her family to keep working.

“I worked so hard for that bachelor’s degree,” Roetto said. “I felt punished for getting a degree and doing better, and I felt so frustrated by that.”

It’s a problem lawmakers have contemplated for years: a system that punishes working mothers who get even a modest pay bump by cutting them off from state child care assistance.

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