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Empowering Tomorrow: The Critical Role of Childcare in Texas Communities

March 20 @ 9:00 am - 10:00 am

The escalating cost of child care services poses a significant challenge for many working parents statewide. Certain communities, particularly those facing economic distress, grapple with the emergence of child care deserts — limited options and availability — attributed to rising prices. On average, Texas families with infants spend nearly $9,500 annually on child care, constituting almost 14% of the median Texas household income. Meanwhile, low salaries make it difficult to attract people to the field. The average child care worker in Texas earns less than $25,000 annually.

The state’s escalating child care crisis is not only a growing burden on the quality of life for everyday Texans but also an economic development challenge. Prioritizing early childhood learning and enhancing access to high-quality, affordable child care in Texas is imperative for building tomorrow’s workforce and the state’s competitiveness.

Join the LBJ School of Public Affairs Urban Lab and The Texas Tribune at 9 a.m. Wednesday, March 20 in person and online for a conversation focused on the work necessary to address the challenges associated with child care across the state.

Confirmed speakers include Liza Gomez, vice president, Ready Children, United Way of San Antonio and Bexar County; Emily Williams Knight, CEO, Texas Restaurant Association and Education Foundation, and on the Employers for Childcare Task Force; and Steven Pedigo, professor and director of the LBJ Urban Lab, LBJ School of Public Affairs, University of Texas at Austin. Moderating the event is Texas Tribune health and human services reporter Karen Brooks Harper.

This in-person event will be live streamed for virtual attendees and will be available to watch on demand afterward at texastribune.org/events.

Doors will open at 8:30 a.m. at the Tribune’s

Studio 919, located at 919 Congress Ave, 6th Floor, in Austin.

The hourlong conversation will begin at 9 a.m. Parking will not be provided; street and garage parking as well as ride-sharing are recommended.

Complimentary coffee will be available.

Parents are welcome to bring their children; please note that child care will not be provided.


March 20
9:00 am - 10:00 am


The Texas Tribune


Studio 919
919 Congress Ave, 6th Floor
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