Giving Compass’ Take:
· The Hechinger Reports looks to derail the widespread misconception in America that child care work is solely for women and adds no value to society. The 2018 Early Childhood Workforce Index provides five key facts about the lives and challenges these workers face.
· How does the child care profession in the U.S. compare to other countries? Why are these workers so underpaid? How can America improve the quality of life for child care workers?
More than 10 million children age 5 and younger spend their days in the care of 2 million adults who are not their parents. Those adults are mostly women and are disproportionately women of color. Even the best paid among them, those who teach kindergarten at public schools, are barely holding on to the bottom rungs of the middle class. Many live in poverty. Fifty-three percent of the child care workforce is enrolled in public assistance of some kind, compared to 21 percent of the U.S. workforce as a whole.
“Any woman doing ‘women’s work’ is not seen as skilled,” said Marcy Whitebook, co-director of the Center for the Study of Child Care Employment at the University of California, Berkeley, and lead author of the 2018 Early Childhood Workforce Index. All of the statistics cited above come from the new report.
Here are five key facts from the 2018 index that illustrate what the people watching young children in this country are facing as they go about their work:
- They earn shockingly little.
- The earnings bump for getting a better education is smaller than in other fields.
- They are disproportionately women of color.
- Where they live matters to their quality of life, sort of.
- We don’t actually know that much about them.
Read the full article about child caregivers by Lillian Mongeau at The Hechinger Report
If you are looking for more articles and resources for Race and Ethnicity, take a look at these Giving Compass selections related to impact giving and Race and Ethnicity.
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