If you're a parent, you know how difficult it can be to find childcare for your children, especially in western North Dakota.
The Economic Impact Committee is listening to childcare representatives about the needs the state is facing.
Three issues the committee wants to study are the availability of childcare, quality and the workforce needed.
Linda Reinicke with ChildCare Aware of North Dakota says the goal is to have the supply of childcare meet 50% of the demand in a community.
<<"North Dakota now on average has 34% of demand and there are many counties, there are ten counties in western North Dakota that have less than 10% of supply meeting demand of childcare," Linda Reinicke said.>>
In 2003 North Dakota had 1600 licensed Child-Care programs, today there are 1300, which Reinicke says isn't enough.
<<"We need more programs across the board, but the trick is, as we get more programs in place we'll need a stronger workforce, so how do we recruit the workforce and how do we keep them, because right now the turnover rate in a center care is about 44 percent every year," Reinicke said.>>
It's difficult for providers to keep employees because of the competitive pay in North Dakota.
In many cases a job at a fast food restaurant will pay more than a childcare provider is able to pay.
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