Debt Limit Legislation Would Cause Irreparable Damage to Head Start

Washington, D.C. — Last week, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) unveiled legislation designed to reduce federal spending while extending the federal debt limit. The debt limit proposal includes a decade-long series of austere spending caps that would apply to discretionary funds, which would likely mean steep funding cuts to programs like Head Start and Early Head Start. In response, National Head Start Association Executive Director Yasmina Vinci made the following statement:

Make no mistake, the current debt limit and budget cap legislation under consideration in the House of Representatives will cause irreparable damage to Head Start not only in fiscal year 2024, but well into the future. Already, Head Start faces severe headwinds of recruiting quality teachers, repairing aging infrastructure, and keeping up with private sector wage rates. Children of military families, kids in foster care, wage workers in rural child care deserts, and families living in high cost urban areas will be left with impossible options. How is this legislation a “commitment to America” and the 170,000 families and children that will likely be left without early learning opportunities? The National Head Start Association joins others in expressing serious concern that these haphazard reductions are entirely ill-advised and urges Congress to reverse course and invest in programs like Head Start that produce results, uplift communities, and break the cycle of poverty.

About NHSA

The National Head Start Association is committed to the belief that every child, regardless of circumstances at birth, has the ability to succeed in school and in life. The opportunities offered by Head Start lead to healthier, empowered children and families, and stronger, more vibrant communities. NHSA is the voice for more than 840,000 children and families from systemically underserved populations, 250,000 staff, and 1,600 Head Start grant recipients. ••• Media Contact: Emily Wagner, Director of Communications,

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