WASHINGTON, DC — Child Care Aware® of America today released the first in its series of data-rich story maps of state child care gaps. The first interactive maps showed that one in four children in Alaska’s working families and two in five children in Massachusetts’s working families lack access to licensed child care.
The maps, some of which show childcare supply and demand by areas as small as a zip code, will be an important tool for state policymakers. The Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) Act of 2014 expects states to analyze child care supply and demand, identify areas of concern, and target resources and develop solutions to ensure quality child care for all families in need. These maps are part of a series; more interactive examinations of child care supply and demand gaps are planned for release later this year.
“At Child Care Aware® of America, we are leading the charge in the child care for all movement,” said Lynette Fraga, executive director of Child Care Aware® of America. “Our deeply detailed maps, which show which areas in a state have the largest gaps in available childcare, are a vital tool to help policymakers direct resources to the areas of greatest need.”
The Massachusetts map highlights the need for child care centers with nontraditional hours near three casinos in the state, one that opened in 2015 and two expected to open in the next two years. One of the planned casinos, the MGM Springfield, projects it will hire 3,000 employees. The maps show:
- There are no licensed child care providers open on weekends within a 10-mile radius of the Plainridge Park Casino, built in 2015.
- There are only six child care providers within a 10-mile radius of the planned Springfield casino open on weekends. The centers’ combined capacity is 54 children.
- There is only one licensed child care provider open after 10 pm within 10-miles of the Plainridge Park Casino; only two in Springfield and three within 10 miles the planned Wynn Boston Harbor Casino.
The Alaska map shows that more than 80 percent of infants and toddlers in the state may not have access to licensed care while their parents are at work. In Anchorage, four out of five infants and toddlers may not have access to licensed care while their parents are at work.
For 30 years, CCAoA has been the leading voice for quality, affordable child care in the United States. While CCAoA continues to pursue our vision of the future in which every family in the United States has access to a high quality and affordable child care system, the sharing of accurate and updated information remains critical.
More than 11 million children under the age of five are in some form of child care in the United States. As the nation’s leading voice for child care, CCAoA is comprised of 125,000 online advocates from across the country and more than 32,000 members. Over 250 parents have shared their stories with lawmakers through our Family Advocacy Summit and Day on The Hill. For child care providers, we offer trainings on emergency preparedness as well as technical assistance that emphasize health, nutrition and obesity prevention and more.
About Child Care Aware® of America
Child Care Aware® of America is our nation’s leading voice for child care. CCAoA works with state and local Child Care Resource and Referral agencies (CCR&Rs) and other community partners to ensure that all families have access to quality, affordable child care. CCAoA leads projects that increase the quality and availability of child care, offer comprehensive training to child care professionals, undertake research, and advocate for child care policies that improve the lives of children and families. To learn more, visit usa.childcareaware.org. Follow them on Twitter @USAChildCare and on Facebook at facebook.com/usachildcare.