Afterschool Child Care Subsidies and Maternal Employment Stability among Low-Income Populations

Xiang Gao, University of Washington

Empirical studies have shown that the high cost of substitute child care pressures parents (especially mothers) to accommodate work arrangements to child afterschool time by reducing work hours, which is regarded as harmful to employment stability. This study hypothesizes that the income eligibility level of child care subsidy influences the likelihood of full-time work among low-income mothers through affecting their use of center-based afterschool child care. Individual data are from National Survey of American Families, 2002. Child care policy data of 13 states are from the Child Care Bureau and 4,401 working mothers are selected into the sample. Using bivariate probit model, the analysis shows that the higher the level of income eligibility set by the state, the higher likelihood of center-based child care use (probit coefficient is .113), as well as the stronger effect of center-based child care on full-time work decision (probit coefficient increases from .583 to .864).

  See extended abstract

Presented in Session 76: Demographic Aspects of Poverty