I am a Downey resident, a single parent, and I know firsthand about the lack of affordable child care in Downey. In 1981 my children were 4, 8 and 12 years old. After I paid for child care for the youngest, I brought home less money than a welfare mother.
After nine months of worrying about my two latchkey children and struggling to pay for child care for the youngest, I was forced to remove my two younger children from their community each workday and take them to another city (10 miles round trip, twice a day) where there was a quality child care program based on my ability to pay.
I spent three years driving my children to Bellflower each day and then returning to my job in Downey. It has only been this present school year that my children have been able to attend the school that is two blocks from our home.
Summer is coming, child care will cost me one-third of my take-home pay, and I am worried.
--KRISTINE L. CERONE