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Child Care Vital To Welfare-To-Work

Nearly 80% of welfare recipients either quit or are fired within 16 months of starting a new job. But that startling statistic from the Welfare to Work Partnership doesnt mean welfare-to-work isnt working. Rather, the problem is that most companies neglect the importance of child care when hiring someone from a welfare-to-work program, says Reggie Gitlin, senior vice president of Work/Life Benefits, Cypress, Calif. The average welfare family has two children, and 80% of welfare recipients do not have cars. Gitlin says retention of such lower-wage employers has increased by 35% at firms that offer welfare-to-work employees subsidies for child care to replace the government funding they had been using, or who sponsor a 24-hour consultation and referral service with a toll-free number to help these workers find suitable child care.

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