“One year into the coronavirus pandemic, and the Idaho Legislature continues to play games with resources many industries desperately need to stay afloat. Specifically, I am shocked by the lack of understanding in the Statehouse of how important the child care industry is to our state’s economy.
Over 200 child care providers in Idaho have closed their doors since September. They simply could not continue to make the bottom line work when enrollment has been down since March 2020, payroll for their dedicated teachers is due every month, and the basic expenses — like rent, utilities and learning materials — remain fixed.
When we cannot raise costs to parents who already struggle to pay, and we cannot pay our teachers any less, we wonder each month how to keep our doors open. Who is going to provide child care?
Child care providers are the foundation of our economic recovery. To get parents back to work, we must ensure child care providers can keep their doors open. Nearly half of Idahoans live in areas where child care providers are already scarce, and this lack of availability is most pervasive in rural communities. We cannot afford to lose even one more provider. Whether you’re taking your child to a child care center or an in-home provider, every working parent needs quality, affordable and safe care for their child while they earn a paycheck.”