Parents with odd work hours struggling to find childcare
Atypical business hours put more strain on workers with young children who are struggling to find options for childcare at odd hours.
According to Child Care Aware of America, one in four low-income Americans work a job with non-standard hours. That means about 31 million children in the U.S. may need childcare during earlier or later hours.
Development Director Rose Cornelious says when county reserve funding runs out for those families, charities like Dorcas Ministries in Cary step in.
“Just imagine a waitress who doesn’t get off until midnight,” said Cornelious. “What does that person do with their children?
The Dorcas thrift shop puts an extra low price on children’s clothing, and store profits and donations enable Dorcas to provide assistance for childcare for parents living or working in Cary or Morrisville.
“We have a lot of requests for before-school care and after-school care,” said Cornelious.
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, only 8 percent of center-based providers offered child care during nonstandard hours like evenings, overnight or on weekends. If those hours are provided, they usually charge more.
Many parents have few -- if any -- options. Cornelious says the demand is high for licensed childcare at non-traditional hours, but the supply is low.
“And I think it’s not just in this community, but across this country -- this is a need,” she said.
Need help finding childcare? Search options on childcareaware.org.