Child Care Costs In Shutdown Hit Low-Income Families

ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) – Governor Mark Dayton has asked a special Judge to consider funding some programs including child care subsidies for low income families during the state government shutdown.

More than 26,000 families across the state receive day care subsidies so they can work and provide for their families. Without them, some parents now fear they may have to quit their jobs to take care of their children.

At Creative Kids Academy Daycare in Anoka, there were only 21 kids there Tuesday compared with more than 60 on a normal day. The daycare director said the missing kids are those that received subsidies.

At Pazazz Salon in Golden Valley, Chere Thompson mans the reception desk wondering how long she can continue to work without having day care.

“It’s so hard for me because he isused to the normalcy and routine going to day care,” Thompson said.

With the subsidy she paid just  $40 a month at this Anoka day care for her 10-year-old, Devon. With the shutdown, she would  have to pay $179 a week. She pulled Devon out of day care because she can’t afford it. Thompson said her son misses the daycare.

“… He asks me every day ‘Mom what do we do next?” she said.

Jamie Mulligan’s three children go to the same day care with the subsidy she pays $100 a month. Without it, the cost is $500 a month. She pulled her three children out and is having to leave her job two hours early.

“It hurts everyone,” she said, referring to the shutdown.

Mulligan said she knows that fewer hours means a smaller paycheck and she worries eventually her employer will lose  patience.

“I am constantly worry about this shutdown every day with the statusof my job,” Mulligan said.

The Creative Kids Day Academy is a chain of six day cares in the Twin Cities. The academy is looking at layoffs if the shutdown continues.

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