In a recently published piece by Stacy Thomas in Human Resources Director magazine, NULab faculty affiliate Alicia Sasser Modestino offers valuable insight into the ways in which the COVID-19 pandemic has affected the labor market, particularly through the recently expired federal subsidies for childcare. Just as women hit the vital milestone of occupying more than half of the workforce in January of 2020, Modestino claims, the pandemic hit and caused major disruption to this benchmark. Now, with federal funding to daycare centers expiring, a “childcare cliff” is approaching; in other words, many childcare centers will close, and costs will rise. Modestino predicts that, as a result of this childcare cliff, we are going to see a dramatic drop of female labor in the workforce, which would lead to a huge impact on the labor market. To better support workers with children, Modestino suggests that employer subsidies should be instituted to help employees with rising childcare costs, and that HR departments should build resources concerning local or community childcare options.
To read the full story on HDR, click here.
For more information on this topic, see Alicia Sasser Modestino’s 2021 piece, “Childcare is a Business Issue,” here.