NEW RESEARCH SHOWS HISPANIC FAMILIES PAYING MORE FOR CHILDCARE UNC GREENSBORO FINDS ALARMING TREND
Greensboro, N.C. (October 21, 2019) – According to new research by UNC Greensboro (UNCG) and the National Research Center for Hispanic Children and Families, 3 in 10 low-income Hispanic households using childcare pay out-of-pocket costs that are, on average, at least four times above the federal benchmark for affordability.
By contrast, fewer than 1 in 10 have out-of-pocket costs that are considered affordable. The report also finds that roughly 6 in 10 low-income Hispanic households have no out-of-pocket expenses for childcare because they use arrangements that are either provided at no cost or are fully subsidized.
“The federal government considers childcare affordable if a family spends 7 percent or less of their total household income on care. Our research shows that many low-income Hispanic families are paying far more than that,” said Danielle Crosby, lead author of the report and Associate Professor, Human Development and Family Studies, at UNCG. “While low-income Hispanic parents have high levels of employment, their low wages and irregular work hours can make it difficult for them to find affordable care.”
According to the report, which examines child care expenses for low-income Hispanic families with young children, Hispanic families who pay for child care spend, on average, a significant proportion of their income on care: Immigrant Hispanic households spend an average of $101.14 per week on care (29 percent of their total household income), while nonimmigrant Hispanic households spend an average of $91.98 per week (26 percent of household income).
State and federal programs that provide low-income families with reduced- or no-cost care and education include Head Start, public pre-kindergarten, and subsidies through the Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF). However, Latino children are less likely than their non-Latino peers to be served by some of these programs. For example, only 8 percent of eligible Hispanic children receive CCDF assistance, compared to 21 percent of eligible non-Hispanic black children and 13 percent of all eligible children.
“While the reach of federal and state programs to address child-care affordability for low-income families has expanded over the years, they still aren’t reaching all eligible children, including eligible Hispanic children,” said Crosby. “A lack of care options available outside standard 9-to-5 work hours is one reason that may reduce access for many low-income Hispanic families.”
To increase the number of eligible Hispanic families who receive assistance to help defray high costs, the authors recommend that states examine how their early care and education policies and administrative processes may influence low-income Hispanic families’ use of the program.
About UNC Greensboro
Led by Chancellor Franklin D. Gilliam, Jr., UNC Greensboro is 1 of only 59 doctoral institutions recognized by the Carnegie Foundation for both higher research activity and community engagement. Founded in 1891 and one of the original three UNC System institutions, UNC Greensboro is one of the most diverse universities in the state with 20,000+ students, and 3,000+ faculty and staff members representing 90+ nationalities.
With 17 Division I athletic teams, 85 undergraduate degrees in over 125 areas of study, as well as 74 master’s and 32 doctoral programs, UNC Greensboro is consistently recognized nationally among the top universities for academic excellence and value, with noted strengths in health and wellness, visual and performing arts, nursing, education, and more.
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