Detroit Regional Chamber > U.S. Chamber: Employers Weigh Childcare Concerns and Assistance Amid Reopening

U.S. Chamber: Employers Weigh Childcare Concerns and Assistance Amid Reopening

January 1, 1970
A report released today by the U.S. Chamber Foundation’s Center for Education and Workforce revealed that 40% of employers are not confident that everyone in their workforce will fully return to work. Of the issues cited as reasons, childcare (79%) is nearly equivalent to concern for health and safety (81%).

The full report provides insight into how employers are thinking about childcare assistance, benefits, and accommodations during COVID-19, and is the second in a series of polls that will survey working parents and employers into the fall. Last week’s survey of working parents found that 22% of working parents with children under the age of six were unsure whether they would return to their pre-COVID situation. 

Key takeaways: Forty percent of employers have offered additional childcare assistance, benefits, or accommodations in response to the effects of COVID-19. Most employers (92%) believe they are aware of the childcare needs of their employees.

Many employers are preparing for additional support as they consider return-to-work scenarios. Currently, one in four are willing to increase their organization’s investment in employee childcare needs, but more than half (51%) would be likely to offer additional childcare assistance if the government provided incentives such as tax benefits or subsidies.

Big Picture: Childcare is now a top-tier issue for everyone in the business community. Without this industry’s survival and ability to safely care for the children of working parents, every other American industry will struggle to return to work.

Dig deeper: Last week the U.S. Chamber sent a letter urging Congress to quickly find a bipartisan path for funding childcare providers that includes:

  • Issuing recovery grants directly for childcare providers to re-open.
  • Establishing a robust, flexible stabilization fund for states and providers.
  • Ensuring expeditious distribution of funds.
  • Ensuring that funding includes adequate grants for licensed home-based childcare. These critical, very small businesses should not be overlooked.