Access to child care has emerged as a major workforce challenge in the Commonwealth. Survey data suggests that upwards of 50,000 Kentucky adults may be facing barriers to participating in the workforce due to struggles to find and afford child care. One in five parents reported quitting a job because of child care challenges in 2020. Thousands more may be on the verge of exiting the workforce due to these same issues. In 2021, a report released by the Kentucky Chamber Foundation identified a lack of affordable child care as a key reason why Kentucky has one of the lowest workforce participation rates in the nation.
Fortunately, there are a range of resources and tools available to position Kentucky employers to play a lead role in addressing these challenges and help working families access and afford care for their children. Today, the Kentucky Chamber is releasing a new guide to raise awareness of these resources among Kentucky employers. The Chamber’s “Child Care Resources for the Kentucky Business Community” guide provides information on several different tools and resources:
- How employers and employees can find child care in their areas
- An overview of child care-related tax incentives and grant programs
- An introduction to House Bill 499 and the new Employee Child Care Assistance Partnership
In addition, the Chamber is releasing a list of recommended survey questions that employers can use to gauge the child care needs of their employees. It is recommended that employers who are interested in providing child care benefits start with an employee survey to understand what types of assistance can most effectively solve child care challenges for their workforce.
- Access the Chamber’s “Child Care Resources for the Kentucky Business Community”
- Access the Chamber’s list of recommended employee survey questions
To learn more, watch this webinar hosted by the Kentucky Chamber and Kentucky Division of Child Care from August 23, 2022.
Last month, the Chamber testified before the General Assembly’s Early Childhood Education Task Force, highlighting how access to child care affects workforce participation and providing recommendations on policies that can support employers seeking to be part of the solution. The Chamber’s testimony can be viewed here.