Making Employment Work for Low Wage Families: Oregon’s Employment-Related Child Care Subsidy Program
Ellen Scott, University of Oregon associate professor of Sociology and head, Department of Women’s and Gender Studies, testified before the Oregon Senate Commerce and Workforce Development Committee and the Oregon House Business and Labor Subcommittee on Workforce Development in early January, delivering the results of a recent study that documents how Oregon’s Employment-Related Day Care Program (ERDC) supports employment and enables parents to meet the needs of their children. The program critical to low-wage workers in Oregon has not been funded in the budget for the next biennium. Activists and researchers who provided testimony at the hearings asked legislators to reconsider this cut to the state budget.
Three major findings from the study were emphasized at the hearings:
- Without a subsidy parents could not afford to work, as most of their wages would be required to cover child care expenses.
- Loss of a subsidy threatens the stability of both child care and employment.
- ERDC parents have substantial child care costs even with a subsidy.
Ellen Scott is a CSWS faculty affiliate. Click here to read her policy brief.
Support for Ellen Scott’s research came in part from CSWS, with funds made available through the Mazie O. Giustina CSWS Endowment Fund for research on Women in the Northwest.