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Child care advocates rally at state Capitol

Updated:
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) Child care advocates rally at the state Capitol for a program that helps low-income parents pay for child care while they work.

Advocates of early child care and education asked lawmakers Tuesday to appropriate $19.1 million for the program during the fiscal year that begins July 1st.

Statewide, over half of children under six have parents who work, and more than 32,000 receive needs-based subsidies in order to stay in safe, healthful environments while their parents are at work.

Tulsa state Representative Ron Peters, who has authored early childhood education legislation, says 34% of all births in Oklahoma were to single mothers in 2002. Twenty years earlier, the figure was 19%.

Peters says 60% of children under the age of five in Oklahoma and Tulsa counties, the state's largest metropolitan areas, live in working parent households and someone other than the parent provides care.
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