I am an employer who is increasingly concerned about the plight of employees and child care. The two-income family is not only a reality, for most families it is a necessity. The burden of responsibility for child care continues to fall on the woman. Not only because of the perpetuation of traditional roles, but because often the woman earns a lower salary and her income (and career, in some cases) are more easily sacrificed. And then there are the single parents. Reliable, low-cost child care is a desperate need in today's society.
I see this issue from two sides: The business owner and the mother (although I am not a mother at this time), and I am convinced that unless the federal and/or state governments encourage employers to be responsive to society's changing needs and underwrite on-site or local day-care centers through tax credits, business owners will not act.
How many welfare mothers could we get trained and working if child care was available at a nominal cost? How many parents would feel better and work more productively knowing that their child was only steps (or at the most, a mile) away?
I suggest a plan to encourage the establishment of day-care centers by employers. Smaller companies could band together and form a center. A plan of tax-free salary reductions for employees (which are already available but not widely offered by employers) to pay for child care on a sliding scale and tax credits for the employer could be just the nudge needed.