Campaign Launched to Address Childcare Worker Shortage in New Hampshire

Campaign Launched to Address Childcare Worker Shortage in New Hampshire
By Colleen Whitcomb, Academic Advisor, Southern New Hampshire University

New Hampshire is one of many states experiencing a shortage of childcare workers since the beginning of the pandemic. Childcare makes up a significant proportion of families’ monthly expenses; however, workers in the industry are paid smaller wages than most industries (Martin, 2022). The pandemic has led to several childcare workers leaving their jobs, creating a staffing shortage around the U.S. Reasons for leaving their roles can range from not enough pay, lack of advancement opportunities, and lack of flexibility with hours (Ferguson, 2022). The childcare industry is predominantly staffed by women, and industry challenges disproportionately impact women of color, who make up 40% of childcare workers (Ferguson, 2022). This impacts the overall economy because it limits parents/guardians from being able to return to work in other industries because of a lack of access to affordable childcare (Ferguson, 2022).

Childcare facilities are important to communities and help children learn skills needed for success in school and beyond. Lack of childcare facilities can also impact children’s health because they are missing out on key educational opportunities and the chance to socialize with other children. Children also learn essential communication skills and develop a sense of their environment (Maryland Department of Education, n.d.).

The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services has partnered with the Boys and Girls Club of Central New Hampshire to launch a campaign to address this shortage of childcare workers. The program utilizes the American Rescue Plan Act funding to promote public service announcements recruiting childcare workers in New Hampshire. These can be used on various platforms, including television and social media. The campaign was initially rolled out in April and has received 750 applicants and has already approved 480 to be placed in childcare facilities across the state (New Hampshire DHHS, 2022). Public health providers can inform the populations they work with about employment opportunities using the link below.

Resources
Child Care Employment in New Hampshire

References
Ferguson, S. (2022). Understanding America’s Labor Shortage: The Scarce and Costly Childcare Issue. U.S.
Chamber of Commerce. Retrieved from: https://www.uschamber.com/workforce/understanding-americas-labor-shortage-the-scarce-and-costly-childcare-issue#:~:text=Because%20of%20gaps%20in%20the,a%20U.S.%20Chamber%20Foundation%20study.

Martin, M. (2022). What the U.S. labor shortage means for child care in the U.S. National Public Radio.
Retrieved from: https://www.npr.org/2022/03/06/1084834300/what-the-u-s-labor-shortage-means-for-child-care-in-the-u-s

Maryland Department of Education. (n.d.). Why is child care and early education so important?
Retrieved from: https://earlychildhood.marylandpublicschools.org/why-child-care-and-early-education-so-important#:~:text=High%2Dquality%20child%20care%20keeps,basic%20mathematical%20skills%20and%20concepts

New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). (2022). State of NH, Partners Launch
Marketing Campaign to Address Critical Shortage of Child Care Workers. Retrieved from: https://www.dhhs.nh.gov/news-and-media/state-nh-partners-launch-marketing-campaign-address-critical-shortage-child-care

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