In 2019, San Diego Workforce Partnership and San Diego Foundation launched the Workforce + Childcare report, which acknowledged that childcare was scarce and often unaffordable to working parents, forcing them to make difficult decisions related to engagement in the workforce. Furthermore, it showed that childcare providers were operating on thin margins that threatened their long-term sustainability.
In combination, the lack of availability, cost to parents, and strained childcare industry warned of a forthcoming regional challenge - prior to the threat of a global pandemic. Since that time, the connection between workforce and childcare has only been strengthened.
As we rebuild and reimagine the future of work, understanding the needs of the individuals who make up the workforce is more important than ever. San Diego Foundation set out to gather feedback from local parents to shed light on the challenges working parents face. Based on these findings, San Diegans expressed overwhelming consensus around several issues:
Nearly all parents agreed that having safe, reliable childcare is crucial for parents to be able to work.1
Nearly three quarters of all respondents agree that their stress related to managing work and childcare responsibilities has gotten worse during the pandemic.1
The vast majority of parents surveyed prefer more flexibility in their work schedule.2
— Dad from San Diego3