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Child care affordability in Colorado: An investigation into child care costs and recommended strategies for improving affordability

After decades of research, it is clear that access to high-quality child care promotes children's healthy development, supports working families and benefits society through positive economic impacts. Unfortunately, the high cost of child care throughout the United States and in Colorado forces many parents to settle for low-quality care or inhibits them from accessing licensed care altogether. The Women's Foundation of Colorado, Qualistar Colorado and the Colorado Children's Campaign have produced this report after a year of investigation into issues of child care affordability with the goal of outlining actionable next steps in improving affordability for Colorado families. In order to determine how affordability might be improved, it is necessary to understand why the price of care appears so high in Colorado. To that end, this report identifies the primary factors that contribute to the high price of child care, examines the variation in family incomes, and applies the measure of affordability as the average price of child care compared to median income in each Colorado county. (author abstract)
Resource Type:
Reports & Papers
United States

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