Balancing Act: The Financial Challenges of Child Care Facing Louisiana's Working Families

The Louisiana Policy Institute for Children, in partnership with the Louisiana Department of Education, conducted a survey of families on the Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP) waiting list in September 2019. The survey asked families about the impact that not receiving child care assistance has had on parent employment, education, or job training; affordability, availability, reliability, and quality of the child care they are accessing; stress related to finding child care; and household budget and living expenses.

 

Results from the survey show the significant challenges facing working families who must balance the care and education of their children with their other basic needs.

  • Nearly half of working parents reported experiencing a change in employment or education without child care assistance, including reducing work hours or quitting a job or education program altogether.

  • 2 in 3 respondents are borrowing money to pay for child care.

  • Almost 80% of respondents struggle to find quality, affordable child care without child care assistance.

  • Over half of respondents are also sacrificing basic household necessities, such as food, clothing, and utilities, to cover the costs of child care.

  • Over 60% of respondents choose their child care based on affordability.

  • 90% of respondents worry about finding child care without child care assistance.

 

More details can be found in the report here and in a one-page brief about the report here

On Tuesday, March 17th, the Louisiana Policy Institute held a virtual press conference to release findings from our new report, Balancing Act: The Financial Challenges of Child Care Facing Louisiana’s Working Families, which details how child care assistance, or lack thereof, impacts Louisiana’s working parents. We were joined by our partners from The Louisiana Department of Education, One Acadiana, the United Way of Acadiana, and the Louisiana Association of United Ways. A recording of the press conference can be viewed here.