The Challenge of Child Care: More Help Needed for Houston's Families

Dinan, Kinsey Alden; Briggs, Jodie

Houston families are working harder than ever. In fact, more than 75 percent of the children living in low-income families in Houston have parents who are employed, and the majority of these children — about 400,000 — have parents who work full-time, year-round. But, despite their best efforts, these parents are struggling to afford the most basic necessities for their families. In Houston, as elsewhere in Texas and the United States, a full-time job at low wages is not enough to make ends meet. Work supports such as the federal Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and public health insurance can help narrow the gap between low earnings and the cost of basic expenses. But a critical Texas work support — child care assistance — is woefully underfunded and therefore out of reach for many qualified families. This fact sheet finds that child care is one of the largest expenses working families face, and unless they receive help with the cost of care, low-wage working parents remain unable to afford basic family necessities.

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Academic Units
National Center for Children in Poverty
National Center for Children in Poverty, Columbia University
Making Work Supports Work Publications
Published Here
June 9, 2010