San Diego (KGTV)- Finding quality and affordable child care is becoming more challenging for parents throughout the county. One local organization says that can be a deciding factor if parents plan to keep their jobs.
“Parents across our region are still struggling to attain quality affordable care for their children,” says Katie Rast with The San Diego Foundation.
In a recent survey conducted by The San Diego Foundation more than 800 parents were asked about their experiences.
76 percent of parents say finding affordable child care in their area is an issue. 68 percent said it's hard finding care for a full workday.
“This means a lot of parents are making a really hard decision which is whether they can stay engaged in the workforce,” says Rast.
During the pandemic, 52 percent of women had to shift their work schedule to accommodate child care compared to 30 percent of men.
Some parents have even quit or considered quitting their jobs.
“We also recognize that parents are disengaging from the workforce for childcare issues. Certainly, we can draw the correlation that child care is essential to the workforce.”
The costs of childcare are also becoming a burden for San Diego families. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the median income from families in the region is a little more than $83,000. But the average annual cost for child care for one infant in a licensed center is more than $19,000. It could cost more than $33,000 for two children.
“That is a cost that is essentially too high for many families to afford,” says Rast.
Rast also adds that childcare providers are struggling too. In another report, it says 90 percent of providers say they had difficulty finding qualified staff.
“Parents may feel like they’re paying an arm and a leg but, oftentimes that fee alone is not covering the costs that the provider sees, when it comes to providing that care for the child.”