To the Editor:
After 17 hours of debate, the Minnesota Senate passed a bill Wednesday regarding the unionization of child care providers and personal care attendants. I voted in opposition to the bill, along with all Republicans and several Democrats.
This bill is unwanted, unnecessary and will make child care more expensive for families and taxpayers. These small business owners are now being forced to join a union against their will.
In this legislation, child care providers, both licensed and unlicensed, who provide services for a child who qualifies for state public subsidies are asked to form a union and collectively bargain with the state to negotiate public subsidy rates and terms of employment. Representation elections for providers must be conducted once a union demonstrates that at least 30 percent of providers have petitioned for an election.
The proposal, pushed by Sen. Sandy Pappas, DFL-St. Paul, is opposed by 86 percent of child care providers, according to the Minnesota Licensed Family Child Care Association.
In rural Minnesota, many child care providers who do not want to be unionized or cannot afford it will be forced to reject CCAP children. In turn, many worry this will create fewer quality child care providers able to accept children of low-income parents. Many communities believe it will be difficult for families to find quality childcare in close proximity to their home.
All child care providers should be able to provide quality, affordable services to parents without government interference or paying fees to some organization.
State Sen.?Julie Rosen,