“…we must begin educating and valuing the input of the next generation of Democratic Socialists.” – DSA Resolution 25: Childcare
The nation’s largest Marxist organization, the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) recently passed numerous resolutions during their biennial convention held in Atlanta, Georgia in August. One of their resolutions, #25 on Childcare, pledged to “prioritize the fight for guaranteed paid parental leave and public universal child care and preschool.” A part of the resolution would be for DSA to provide childcare in their own chapters.
The resolution (copied in its entirety below) may not seem as troubling as their resolution to show solidarity with Cuba, for example, or the resolution to work with the violent domestic terror organization known as “Antifa,” but “Universal Pre-K” has long been a Marxist program designed to take children away from their parents as soon as possible and, as according to the resolution, “[S]ocialism recognizes that childrearing should be a communal undertaking” which would shape a child’s “social, political, and emotional development.”
During their general meeting, the Portland Chapter of DSA tweeted about their “Universal Preschool Now 2020 campaign”, which involves, of course, organizing child care providers. During a recent meeting, they claimed that their demands include “FREE full-day, full-year Universal preschool with unionized staff compensated like K-12 teachers. All paid for by the top 5% of income earners.”
Here’s what we are demanding:— Portland DSA (@PortlandDSA) September 8, 2019
FREE full-day, full-year Universal preschool with unionized staff compensated like K-12 teachers. All paid for by the top 5% of income earners. ✊✏️ pic.twitter.com/iOfa3ZxBcJ
Here is the DSA Resolution:
Be it therefore resolved:
1. That DSA prioritize the fight for guaranteed paid parental leave and public universal child care and preschool, and dedicate resources, including staff time and $10,000 over the next two years, to develop a national campaign for federal, state, and local legislation guaranteeing paid parental leave and free, high-quality child care and preschool for all children;
2. That DSA require endorsed candidates to support guaranteed paid parental leave and public universal child care and preschool and encourage candidates and elected officials to develop universal (not means-tested) policies to that effect;
3. That DSA’s National Labor Commission or DSA members active in labor organizing and the Socialist Feminist Working Group or a sub-committee thereof collaborate to develop a feminist labor strategy to support efforts by domestic and child care workers to organize and improve their wages and working conditions;
4. That DSA dedicate national resources, including staff time and $10,000 to be spent at the direction of the Socialist Feminist Working Group in coordination with the NPC and national staff as well as members that have developed existing child watch programs, to: a. develop or modify and disseminate child watch materials for chapters, starting with the adaptation of existing chapter initiatives, and a survey of chapters to identify their needs and preferences in child watch programming, b. train members to provide child watch services at chapter meetings and events while underlining the need for cis men to readily take up this work, c. help chapters navigate statewide requirements for providing such services, and d. make child watch programs as inclusive as possible of disabled children and children with other needs;
5. That the Socialist Feminist Working Group or a sub-committee thereof will establish a timeline and milestones for child watch program progress in coordination with the NPC and national staff, with the goal of working towards at least 75% of chapters having at least one member trained in child watch programming, and 50% of chapters having a regular child watch program, providing child watch for at least every chapter-wide meeting, by August 1, 2020.
WHEREAS, Our socialism is feminist, pro-worker, and dedicated to fighting against the burdens of capitalism for all parents and caregivers, particularly for women of the working class, who provide disparate amounts of reproductive labor, including child care;
The United States is one of the only countries in the world that does not require workplaces to offer paid parental leave to workers;
Low wages require most parents and caregivers to work full-time or more than full-time outside the home, causing them to rely on paid care for their children, or to rely upon the uncompensated labor of extended relatives or community members who may already be burdened by multiple obligations under capitalism;
Daycare and other forms of child care are expensive, costing more than in-state tuition at a four-year public college in 33 states, and are an undue burden on the working class;
Child care workers often receive low wages, are deeply exploited by difficult working conditions, are disproportionately women of color or immigrants, may not be eligible to unionize under the NLRA, often work in the informal sector, and often struggle to find affordable or adequate care for their own children while they care for the children of others;
Domestic and child care work is a key, largely unorganized sector of the economy, related to other female-dominated sectors of reproductive labor such as nursing and teaching;
The capitalist economy relies upon the unpaid or underpaid reproductive labor of people who can become pregnant and people who take on caregiving roles to reproduce its workforce;
Providing free, high-quality universal child care and preschool would reduce the reliance of working parents on their workplaces for wages and child care benefits, thus shoring up worker power;
Socialism recognizes that childrearing should be a communal undertaking, and that by providing welcoming and supportive spaces for children, we can support both those children’s own social, political, and emotional development, along with ameliorating their primary caregivers’ alienation and atomization under capitalism;
Our own organizing spaces must be inclusive, accessible, and welcoming to people of all ages, including families with children, and we must begin educating and valuing the input of the next generation of Democratic Socialists.
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