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Hundreds of North Carolina Childcare Providers and Advocates Unite in ‘Day Without Childcare’ to Highlight Childcare and Funding Crisis

Without action from the North Carolina General Assembly, the state stands to lose one in three childcare centers when critical funding expires on June 30.

RALEIGH, NC – On Thursday, May 16, the National Domestic Workers Alliance,  the leading voice for dignity and fairness for millions of care and domestic workers across the country,  joined Child Care for NC: United for Change to organize a state-wide “Day Without Child Care” in North Carolina. The May 16th action drew attention to the severe crisis facing the childcare sector in North Carolina, which stands to worsen when pandemic-era funding expires on June 30 without action from the General Assembly. 

The demonstration brought together hundreds of providers, workers, parents, and advocates from across North Carolina, emphasizing the critical role of childcare in maintaining the state’s economic stability. The event underscored the dire consequences of the upcoming expiration of federal funding, which threatens the closure of over 1,500 childcare programs and the loss of nearly 92,000 childcare slots by this summer

This week’s action was a stark preview of the potential future without affordable childcare, showcasing the widespread impact on North Carolina’s workforce and families. 

“Without intervention, our community can see 1 in 3 childcare centers closing —a catastrophic reduction that could strip our state of its backbone,” shared Erin Carson, NDWA’s Organizing Director for We Dream in Black (WeDiB) North Carolina. “Childcare is not a luxury; it’s a crucial element of our economic infrastructure, essential for enabling parents to maintain their employment. Further, our childcare workers are already struggling to make ends meet while living costs continue to rise. We need to continue this funding, increase wages for care workers, and keep working towards a future where families can access affordable care.”

“I was thrust into the world of child care out of necessity when I lost my child care voucher as a single mother. This personal crisis not only led me into the field but has fueled my commitment ever since. As a childcare provider, we’ve used the latest federal funds to improve teacher salaries and significantly enhance our facilities. These changes aren’t just numbers on a page— they mean that parents can go to work knowing their children are in safe, stimulating environments.” said Emma Biggs,  Director of Pathway Preschool Center in Charlotte and an NDWA Member. “On May 16th, we not only closed our center; we took our cause to Raleigh, where we joined hands with many to demand sustained support. Without the necessary funding or resources, I will have to continue raising fees for families and reducing our hours to manage costs, something we cannot afford to do. I am stepping out because I know my center is not alone in this battle.”

The economic and social ramifications of the funding cut were at the forefront of the demonstration on Halifax Mall. The closure of childcare centers disrupts family lives and hinders economic growth. The demonstration highlighted how the loss of funding would force childcare providers to increase fees or reduce services, placing a significant burden on already stretched family budgets. Further, beyond keeping doors open, organizers called for new standards for childcare workers to receive better wages and ensure affordable and accessible care for families. 

The “Day Without Child Care” concluded with legislative visits that sent a clear message: without swift legislative action, the quality and accessibility of childcare in North Carolina will diminish, affecting not only the families and workers but the entire state economy. 

Specifically, childcare providers, families, and advocates are demanding a one-time allocation of $300 million to help childcare programs stay open and recommend additional policies like $95 million annually to fund a new childcare subsidy rate structure to help childcare programs serve working families, and another $10 million annually for Smart Start to provide statewide early childhood infrastructure that supports child care, children’s health and developmental outcomes, early literacy, and families with young children in all 100 counties.


  • Spectrum News 1: ‘Child care is in crisis’: Providers rally as funding shortfall looms
  • WRAL: Day without child care: NC providers close for a day in rally to keep centers open
  • NC Newsline: “A Day Without Childcare” in NC seeks to stress the importance funding needs
  • CBS 17: Day without Child Care: NC providers set to close for one day for demonstration
  • CBS 17: Child care advocates call for more funding during Day Without Child Care event
  • WUNC: As North Carolina approaches the ‘child care cliff,’ will state lawmakers step in?
  • ABC 11: Child care centers across NC closed for a day of action in Raleigh 
  • Univision 40: “Un día sin cuidado infantil” en Raleigh: proveedores exigen más fondos para realizar su labor
  • PRE: A Day Without Childcare in North Carolina
  • North Carolina Health News: ‘Care can’t wait’: Child care advocates rally for funding, support 
  • WRAL: Hundreds of child care providers rally in Raleigh
  • EdNC: Child care providers rally at the legislature for stabilization funding
  • EdNC: Perspective | A day without child care: A glimpse into North Carolina’s future


National Domestic Workers Alliance (NDWA)
National Domestic Workers Alliance (NDWA) is the leading voice for dignity and fairness for millions of domestic workers in the United States. Founded in 2007, NDWA works for respect, recognition and inclusion in labor protections for domestic workers, the majority of whom are immigrants and women of color. NDWA is powered by over 70 affiliate organizations and local chapters and by a growing membership base of nannies, house cleaners and care workers in over 20 states. Learn more at NDWA is a non-partisan non-profit organization that does not endorse, support, or oppose any candidates for public office.