Indicators of Welfare Dependence: Annual Report to Congress, 2001 . Employment and Work-related Risk Factor 9. Child Care Expenditures

03/01/2001

Figure WORK 9. Percentage of Monthly Income Spent on Child Care by Families with Employed Mothers: 1995

Figure WORK 9. Percentage of Monthly Income Spent on Child Care by Families with Employed Mothers: 1995

Source: U.S. Bureau of the Census, “Who’s Minding the Kids?  Child Care Arrangements: Fall 1995” Current Population Reports, Series P70-70 2000.


  • Child care expenditures accounted for more than one-third (35 percent) of the monthly family income of poor families with employed mothers who used paid arrangements for at least one child under age fifteen in the fall of 1995.  Child care expenses accounted for a much smaller share – 7 percent – of monthly income of non-poor families with employed mothers.  Across all families, the share is also about 7 percent.

  • As shown in Table WORK 9a, employed single mothers spent a larger percentage of their monthly family income on child care expenses (13 to 14 percent) than did employed married mothers (6 percent).

  • The percentage of family income spent on child care has risen slowly, but steadily, from 6 percent in 1986 to 7 percent in 1995, as shown in Table WORK 9b. 

  • Child care expenditures as a percentage of monthly income in poor families with employed mothers has fluctuated in the past several years, from 27 percent in 1991, to 21 percent in 1993 and 35 percent in 1995.

Table WORK 9a. Percentage of Monthly Income Spent on Child Care by Families with Employed Mothers, by Selected Characteristics: 1995

All Families 7.4
Racial Categories  
Non-Hispanic White 6.8
Non-Hispanic Black 8.7
Hispanic 11.9
Marital Status  
Married, Husband Present 6.4
Widowed, Separated, Divorced 13.7
Never Married 13.4
Poverty Status  
Below poverty 34.8
Above poverty 7.0
    100 to 199 percent of poverty 16.9
    200 percent and above poverty 6.2

Notes: Based on expenditures for families with children under age fifteen and an employed mother and at least one child in a paid child care arrangement.

Source: U.S. Bureau of the Census, “Who’s Minding the Kids? Child Care Arrangements: Fall 1995,” Current Population Reports, Series P70-70, 2000.

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