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D.C. Council Member Fights Privatization Of City Child Care

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Ben Butler, president of the union representing D.C. Parks and Recreation workers.
Rebecca Sheir
Ben Butler, president of the union representing D.C. Parks and Recreation workers.

Nearly 200 city child-care workers in D.C. are poised to lose their jobs Friday, but one council member is trying to put a stop to that.

D.C. Council Member Harry Thomas, Jr. sponsored an amendment that would halt a plan to privatize the city's child-care system and close 13 child-care facilities.

"How can you tell people who have come to work every day on behalf of our city that they are no longer valued, and that privatization is the way," says Thomas.

Darlene Williams got her pink slip last month. But she says her job isn't the only issue. "It's where our babies gonna go," says Williams. I have parents still calling me, that's got babies at home, they cannot go to work because they don't have nobody to watch their children."

The council did vote to add Thomas' amendment to the Budget Support Act, which must ultimately be approved by the mayor.

Rebecca Sheir reports...

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