By Adora Brown
The cost of childcare in Boston is beginning to resemble college tuition as labor shortages devastate the industry.
Massachusetts now has the highest care cost of infants of all states in the country. The shocking figures put the average annual cost of infant care in Massachusetts at $20,913, far ahead of California.
As workers leave for higher pay, families struggle to find affordable child care in the city.
The COVID-19 pandemic played an instrumental role in this tuition increase, as forced closures exacerbated pre-existing issues. High minimum wage and regulations requiring low infant-to caregiver ratios increase the cost of labor across the state.
Despite the grim situation, Governor Charlie Baker is trying their best to solve the issues. Experts are also hopeful new state and federal legislation will increase funding for childcare and restore the industry’s prices.
Massachusetts is allocating $400 million in grants to childcare programs affected by COVID-19 through funding from the Federal U.S. Rescue Plan that was approved in March. So far, $80 million has been allocated to more than 5,500 projects.