Opinion Poll: Access to Affordable Childcare is Important to the Small Business Ecosystem

For Immediate Release: 
Tuesday, April 9, 2024

A new poll finds small business owners are supportive of legislative solutions that would invest in affordable childcare and mitigate workforce disruptions 

Washington, D.C. — Today, Small Business Majority released new research that finds a lack of affordable childcare is hindering small business growth, and small business owners are strongly supportive of legislative solutions that would address the high cost of care and expand access. 

Access to quality, affordable childcare impacts the small business ecosystem in a number of ways. Most poll respondents (92%) are parents themselves, and the poll reveals that a lack of access to affordable childcare for their own children created an impediment for entrepreneurs to start their business (58% agree) and grow their business (59% agree). 

A lack of access to childcare has also impeded the ability of small businesses to retain a skilled workforce and maintain their business operations. For example, 30% of small businesses have had an employee quit, 27% had an employee turn down a promotion, and 31% have lost revenue or earnings due to childcare issues. More than 6 in 10 agree that their employees’ childcare issues have affected their ability to do their job as efficiently as both the employer and employee would like.

“Investments in childcare are critical to removing barriers to economic growth,” said Janna Rodriguez, Owner and Founder of The Innovative Daycare Corp in Freeport, N.Y. “Small childcare businesses like mine rely on a small workforce to thrive. But that workforce also desperately needs reliable, affordable childcare themselves, and they may seek other employment or leave the workforce entirely if they can’t access affordable care. I’m just now slowly hiring after my business faced closures and significant financial impacts during the pandemic. We need continued state and federal investments in childcare so that I can ensure a stable work environment and restore confidence in consistent care for our working parents.” 

The research shows that small business owners want policymakers to take action on the cost of childcare, and they are supportive of a number of solutions that will improve access to affordable care, sustain quality talent and build a robust economy. Some of those solutions include:

  • Renewing $16 billion in funding for the Child Care Stabilization Grant program (67% support), a federal program that bolstered the childcare industry and expired last fall
  • Expanding access to the Small Business Administration’s main loan programs for working capital and real estate expansion for nonprofit childcare providers (66% support)
  • Expanding a tax credit aimed at helping businesses provide childcare to their workers (73% support)

“Our research shows that childcare is essential to the small business ecosystem and is a key factor in entrepreneurial growth,” said John Arensmeyer, Founder & CEO of Small Business Majority. “Nearly 4 in 10 small business owners report that they have lost out on business opportunities because of challenges with childcare. This is why we need Congress to act on measures like the Child Care Stabilization Act, which can expand access to affordable care and help smaller firms retain talented employees. In this precarious climate for our nation’s childcare industry, investing in childcare and early childhood education is a common-sense and necessary solution.”  

This poll reflects a survey of 566 small business owners nationwide who are parents and/or have employees with children. The poll was an online survey conducted Jan. 30-31, 2024 via SurveyMonkey’s online panel. Click here to read the full report. 

This survey data will be highlighted during a U.S. Senate Small Business & Entrepreneurship Committee hearing on Wednesday, April 10, titled “The Role of Child Care Small Businesses in Supporting Parents and the American Workforce.” 



About Small Business Majority

Small Business Majority is a national small business organization that empowers America's diverse entrepreneurs to build a thriving and equitable economy. We engage our network of more than 85,000 small businesses and 1,500 business and community organizations to advocate for public policy solutions and deliver resources to entrepreneurs that promote equitable small business growth. Our deep connections with the small business community along with our scientific research enable us to educate the public about key issues impacting America’s entrepreneurs, with a special focus on advancing the smallest businesses and those facing systemic inequalities. Learn more about us on our website and follow us on TwitterFacebook and Instagram.

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