PORTLAND, Ore. — With child care prices soaring in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, working parents are finding ways to receive support from their employers, even if it means leaving the company.
So says KinderCare's 2022 Parent Confidence Report, which revealed less than a third of parents are satisfied with their employer’s child care benefits. Another 55% of parents said they would take a pay cut to work for a company that provided quality child care.
“We’ve reached a point where child care is no longer an optional benefit,” said Dan Figurski, president of KinderCare Education at Work and Champions, a nationwide child care provider based in Lake Oswego, Oregon. “It’s just as critical as medical or dental coverage in determining an employer’s ability to retain current employees and attract new hires.”
Figurski cited a report from Child Care Aware of America, which revealed the average annual cost for an infant in an Oregon child care center is $11,964. The cost of center care for two children is more than twice the annual cost of tuition at a four-year college.
There are several benefits that companies can offer to alleviate the stress on working parents, per the report. The list includes education funding, tax credits and different programs for child care. According to the report, which surveyed 2,023 parents with children 12 or younger, just 22% of employers provide subsidized child care while 25% provide on-site child care.
The Portland Business Journal has more on the report, as well as other child care issues.