The Difficulty of Obtaining a Child Care Subsidy: Implications for Policy and Practiceedit
Single mothers leaving welfare face a web of obstacles in accessing child care subsidies. This paper develops a model of child care selection and subsidy use among welfare leavers. Findings suggest that the level of trust between parents and child care providers and the availability of information about facilities were important decision-making criteria. Efforts to work with this population need to address their lack of information about subsidies to increase the range of child care alternatives and quality and also to promote trusting relationships between social workers and welfare leavers. Specific recommendations include combining ongoing case management with education about child care alternatives and subsidies. However, child care information services should be separated from subsidies to promote trust in relationships with clients.