An All-American Alternative to Outrageous Child Care Costs
Does the cost of childcare have you down? Does your monthly child care bill make you want to scream? If so, you aren’t alone. Families in Oregon are spending 14% to 46% (or more!) of their monthly incomes on childcare.
It doesn’t have to be this way and you don’t need to quit your job and be a stay-at home parent, make your mother move to a town near you, or move to Sweden to find a solution. You can simply join the military. You see, they have the right idea about child care in the U.S. Military. They believe in balancing “caregiver salaries while limiting the financial impact on [families because] competitive salaries help to recruit and retain quality staff. Retaining high quality staff contributes to continuity of care.” Translated this means quality, affordable care provided by well-paid caregivers.
For military families, quality looks like a 98% accreditation rate for child care providers (compare with 2% here in Oregon). Affordable looks like maximum fees of $139 a week for families earning $125,000 or more (yeah, that is A LOT of zeroes). Families earning something similar to the Oregon average can expect to pay $106 to $121 weekly per child, while families earning with earnings similar to the Oregon average for single parents can expect to pay $44 to $59 for one child weekly. The military makes this possible by providing subsidies to child care providers so that they can pay their staff well AND offer low cost fees to families.
Quality, affordable care provided by well-paid caregivers is something all Oregon families can get behind.