The fiscal cliff would have profound and draconian consequences for the City of Providence. If we go over the cliff, federal support for 21st Century Community Learning Centers will be cut by 20 percent which could force Providence to close up to four after-school programs that serve our highest-poverty neighborhoods. More than 100 young children could be denied access to Head Start — an early education program that helped me and so many other poor, young children start school ready to learn. More than 150 teachers could be locked out of high-quality professional development, putting our students at a disadvantage.
Beyond our schools, the fiscal cliff would cut energy assistance, elderly and handicapped transportation services, employment training and other vital services the newly reorganized Community Action Partnership of Providence provides.