The reason for the meeting is that Lincoln County parents are stuck in the same situation as families all over the country – child care is expensive and more often than not not up to par – certainly not by European standards.
As Lincoln County tries to attract higher skilled and professional young families they run in to a shortage of child health and development facilities. And what IS available can be very pricey.
Among those taking part in the discussion about the quality and the number of child care facilities will be Alma Baxter, Department of Health Services, Toby Winn of Neighbors for Kids, Lola Jones, Director of Samaritan House, Barbara Dougherty, Director of Samaritan Early Learning Center, Dr. Lesley Ogden, CEO of Samaritan Hospital in Newport and Dr. Brigette Ryslinge, President of Oregon Coast Community College.
Beyond simply watching after children are the requirements that children need comprehensive emotional and mental development experiences during their daily stay in local child care facilities.
But there are very few fully certified childcare centers in Lincoln County, especially those that operate year-round and accept and are approved for subsidies for lower income families. And the situation is even more tenuous for infants, toddlers and children with disabilities. Research shows that nearly 75% of families in Lincoln County with children under the age of 6 have parents in the labor force while similar families throughout the rest of Oregon stand at 62%.
Child care specialists say that the lack of reliable, full time child care services a big burden on these workers and families as well as their employers.
These and other critical issues surrounding child care will be discussed Tuesday, September 25th, 6pm at the Newport Public Library at 35 NW Nye in Newport.