NYS Seal



Oral Testimony by Invitation Only


Child Day Care Center Closings in New York City


To examine the barriers and strategies to meeting child care needs in New York City.

Friday, May 2, 2008
Assembly Hearing Room, Room 1923, 19th Floor
250 Broadway
New York, New York

The Administration for Children's Services (ACS) recently closed two major child care centers in New York City. Contracts with Children's Liberation Day Care Center in Manhattan's East Village and Lucille Murray Child Development Center in the Mott Haven section of the Bronx were terminated in early January. The two centers collectively served over 300 children. Lucille Murray represents the fourth day care center to be closed in the South Bronx alone, for a total loss of 400 slots in one of the city's poorest areas.

Despite ACS citing financial mismanagement and building repairs as primary reasons for the closings, a number of families, child care workers and teachers expressed concern and anger that the decision to close Children's Liberation and Lucille Murray was unnecessary and detrimental to many low-income families in the area. Concerns exist over the effect the closings will have on families who depended on the centers, many for subsidized child care. ACS has planned to transfer many of the children to other providers, and to issue vouchers for families to locate new child care. Yet many of the affected families were conveniently living near the centers and relied on them to maintain employment while their children were being cared for. Doubts exist over whether these parents will be able to find quality, affordable and local day care services in a timely manner.

The New York State Assembly's Committee on Children and Families is holding this hearing to identify the obstacles that New York City day care centers face and the reasons behind the recent closings. The Committee is interested in hearing from parents with child care needs and from ACS on strategies to meeting these needs throughout New York City.

Please see below for a list of subjects to which witnesses may direct their testimony. Persons wishing to present pertinent testimony to the Committee at the above hearing should complete and return the enclosed reply form as soon as possible. It is important that the reply form be fully completed and returned so that persons may be notified in the event of emergency postponement or cancellation.

Oral testimony will be limited to 10 minutes. In preparing the order of witnesses, the Committee will attempt to accommodate individual requests to speak at particular times in view of special circumstances. These requests should be made on the attached reply form or communicated to Committee staff as early as possible. In the absence of a request, witnesses will be scheduled in the order in which reply forms are postmarked.

Ten copies of any prepared testimony should be submitted at the hearing registration desk. The Committee would appreciate advance receipt of prepared statements.

In order to further publicize these hearings, please inform interested parties and organizations of the Committee's interest in hearing testimony from all sources.

In order to meet the needs of those who may have a disability, the Assembly, in accordance with its policy of non-discrimination on the basis of disability, as well as the 1990 Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), has made its facilities and services available to all individuals with disabilities. For individuals with disabilities, accommodations will be provided, upon reasonable request, to afford such individuals access and admission to Assembly facilities and activities.

William Scarborough
Member of Assembly
Committee on Children and Families


  1. Will all the children that were previously attending Lucille Murray and Children's Liberation be transferred to other providers? What is the distance from Lucille Murray and Children's Liberation from these providers?

  2. What type of assistance will ACS give to parents receiving vouchers who are having trouble finding new child care slots for their children?

  3. Since 2004, ACS has closed four day care centers in the Bronx including Lucille Murray. Please describe the process that took place in transferring the children from the three previous day care center closings to new child care slots. How many found new day care?

  4. The New York City Department of Investigation issued a memo to ACS citing financial mismanagement at Lucille Murray. How were funds misused? What has been done to rectify this?

  5. Would appointing a new community service provider to operate Lucille Murray and Children's Liberation be a reasonable solution to keeping them open? Please explain.

  6. How often is under-enrollment a factor in shutting day care centers? If parents are having trouble finding day care slots for their children, how is it possible that under-enrollment exists? What barriers to finding day care exist for these parents?

  7. How many child care centers accepting subsidized child care currently exist in New York City? Where are they?

  8. Please describe the "Full Enrollment Initiative". What is the status of the project and what types of results is it producing?


Persons wishing to present testimony at the public hearing Child Day Care Center Closings are requested to complete this reply form as soon as possible and mail it to:

Naomi Golden
Legislative Analyst
Assembly Committee on Children and Families
Room 522 - Capitol
Albany, New York 12248
E-mail: goldenn@assembly.state.ny.us
Phone: (518) 455-4371
Fax: (518) 455-4693

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