Join us in promoting early childhood success this November!
Edward Street’s 2022 Election Guide is here to show you how.
A vote for early childhood is a vote for the community
Why is Edward Street so focused on early childhood? Let us count the ways.
Millions of neurons are formed each second during the first few years of life, setting the stage for academic and professional success. High-quality early education and care even improves adult health and wellness.
Moreover, experts, worried about a shrinking Massachusetts economy, are recommending increased funding for early childhood education and care.
Questions to ask about early childhood and what to listen for
Make sure candidates and voters are talking about early education and care on social media and at candidates’ forums. Ask questions like:
- What is your plan to ensure that all young children have access to high quality and affordable early education?
- How will you support the professional development and compensation of the early education and care workforce?
- How would you ensure all young children have what’s needed for a healthy beginning, such as food security, housing, and prenatal care?
Now, on to the candidates and ballot questions!
Candidates for governor and lieutenant governor and other statewide seats
A number of statewide seats are on the ballot this November, from Governor and Lieutenant Governor to Attorney General and Secretary of State.
In the governor’s race, Republican Geoff Diehl does not mention early education and care on his campaign website and has not commented on it publicly, to our knowledge.
On the Democratic side, gubernatorial candidate and current Attorney General Maury Healy has come out in favor of targeted early childhood funding.
“Our early childhood education and care system – which is essential to the basic functioning of our economy – is in desperate need of investment. We saw what happened during this pandemic to our child care system – children suffered, parents couldn’t go to work, and businesses and the economy struggled,” says her campaign. “As Governor, [Maura] will continue to advocate for federal funding for early education and care, as well as explore state solutions to the child care crisis.”
To learn more about these candidates and candidates for Attorney General, Secretary of State, and more, search for their websites and news sources online. You can find their names here.
Second congressional district candidates for U.S. Congress
Here in the Second Congressional District (covering much of Worcester County) Democratic incumbent James McGovern and Republican challenger Jeffrey Sossa-Paquette are vying to represent Worcester in Washington D.C.
McGovern, currently serving his 12th term in Congress, “continues urging House leadership to provide robust funding” for programs such as Reach Out and Read, Head Start, and the Child Care Development Block Grant. He has also “led the fight to strengthen school lunch programs, understanding that school meals are as essential for our children’s ability to learn as any textbook.”
Sossa-Paquette, McGovern’s challenger, has first-hand experience in the childcare field as an owner-operator. Rather than increased funding, he favors a shift in how current childcare dollars are being spent. “Agencies like EEC (the Massachusetts Department of Early Education and Care) must work better with actual program providers and daycare providers,” he says. “Programs need to meet local community needs, not a one-size-fits-all approach from the federal and state governments.”
Several other seats are on the ballot as well. See the full list here.
Worcester District candidates for the Massachusetts legislature and more
Massachusetts State Senate and Congressional candidates are also squaring off this November, as well as candidates for District Attorney, Councillor, and Sheriff.
See the full list here.
Edward Street urges voters to research each candidate’s childcare policies and voting records. Find their campaign websites and search for interviews and news stories published online.
Ballot questions to be aware of this November
Three out of four ballot questions will impact children and families directly.
Question 1: Proposed amendment to the state constitution to create an additional tax on income over $1 million.
A “Yes” vote on Question 1 supports a 4% state income tax on income earned in excess of $1 million. Revenues would be used, subject to appropriation by the state legislature, for public education, public colleges and universities, and for the repair and maintenance of roads, bridges, and public transportation.
Although early education and care is not specifically mentioned, education funding will support Worcester-area families overall, and Edward Street hopes legislators will make childcare a priority.
Those in favor of voting “Yes” on Question 1 argue that the state’s current tax rules, which allow multimillionaires to pay a smaller share in taxes than individuals in other tax brackets, should be changed.
A “No” vote on Question 1 supports no change to the state’s income tax. Those urging a “No” vote say a rate hike will negatively impact employers and retirees.
Question 2: Law proposed by initiative petition to regulate dental insurance
A “Yes” vote will regulate dental insurance rates by requiring companies to spend at least 83% of premiums on member dental expenses and quality improvements.
Proponents say corporate executives are pocketing more than their fair share. (For example, according to its own 2019 Form 990 taxes, Delta Dental spent $382 million in executive bonuses, commissions, and payments to affiliates in Massachusetts alone, while targeting $177 million for patient care.)
A “No” vote on Question 2 would make no change to state law relative to the regulations that apply to dental insurance companies. Critics of Question 2 say it will increase costs for Massachusetts families and employers and could result in decreased access to dental care.
Question 4: Eligibility for driver’s licenses
A “Yes” vote on Question 4 will keep in place an existing law that allows Massachusetts residents, regardless of their immigration status, to obtain a driver’s license or permit.
Proponents say a “Yes” vote will improve road safety, help more residents work and go to school, and support parents' ability to drive young ones to childcare programs, schools, and activities.
A “No” vote on Question 4 will repeal this law. Critics say the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles does not have the ability to verify documents from other countries. They say the bill is unfair to those who have taken the time to immigrate to the United States legally.
Vote early or vote on November 8th. Vote in-person or by mail
It’s easier than ever to vote in Massachusetts.
- Vote in-person on election day: Fill out and cast a ballot at your assigned election site (based on your address).
- Vote by mail: To vote by mail, you have to sign up in advance. You can do so online or at your local election office. After your ballot has been mailed to you, you can vote by mail before election day or via a drop-off box on or before election day.
Not yet registered to vote? Registered to vote but need to change your address or party affiliation?
You still have time.
Register online, by mail (find options for non-English speaking individuals here), or in-person. Mail-in registrations must be postmarked October 29th or earlier. In-person or online registration must be completed by 5 p.m. on October 29th.
Change your address or party affiliation here.
Now, get out and vote this November and ask your friends and neighbors to do the same. Children are counting on you!