It’s no secret that many parents are reaching the end of their ropes as the Coronavirus pandemic drags on. For many, it has permanently impacted their career paths and the choices their families will need to make moving forward. A significant aspect of this struggle is the ongoing lack of available child care that is desperately needed for parents to work.
In August, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation (USCCF) surveyed working parents to better understand if and how their child care challenges may have evolved as the impact of COVID-19 has endured. A report on the survey findings makes clear this pandemic, “has underscored the essential nature of child care for working parents, the larger workforce, and the economy.”
This survey found that 26% of parents are paying for a childcare arrangement they are not currently using while 63% of parents anticipate needing to change their child care arrangement in the next year. This shifting situation is not sustainable for working families and many are already reaching their breaking point. Parents have been forced to use a patchwork of caregivers and family members to fill in the gaps of care that a child care facility would normally provide as seen in figure 3 below.
The USCCF also spoke with several working parents to better understand how they are handling the challenges of parenting and working, all while living through a global pandemic. The reality is both unsettling and untenable as many point to a lack of access to quality, affordable child care as a barrier to their families’ ability to thrive.
Read the full report here.