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The economic impact of the child care industry in Minnesota

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National Economic Development and Law Center
Publication Date: 
1 Oct 2003

Available in print (see SOURCE) and online for download.

Excerpt from press release:

Minnesota's $962 million child care industry is essential to strengthening the state's business and economic future, according to a report prepared by the National Economic Development and Law Center (NEDLC), in partnership with the Minnesota Child Care Resource and Referral Network.

The report documents how the child care industry is integral to sustaining and growing the state's economy. Specifically, the child care industry:

- enables businesses to recruit employees, reduce turnover and absenteeism, and increase productivity;
- ensures a strong economy in the future; and
- is a significant income-generating, job-creating industry in its own right.

"Through our research, we found that Minnesota's gross receipts for their child care industry are 77 percent the size of the corn industry, for which the state ranks third nationwide in crop production," says Jen Wohl, Child Care Program Manager, National Economic Development and Law Center and co-author of the report. "Clearly, the child care industry benefits Minnesota's economy."

The report recommends that all child care industry stakeholders - business, government and child care providers - recognize the impact that the child care industry has on the future of Minnesota's labor force and economic stability. These groups need to work together to more effectively plan for the state's financial growth by incorporating child care issues and needs into state and local economic development planning.

"Investment in human capital breeds economic success not only for those being educated, but also for the overall economy," says Rob Grunewald, Regional Economic Analyst, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. "The return on investment from early childhood development is extraordinary, resulting in better working public schools, more educated workers and less crime. To ensure the future success of Minnesota's economy, we must continue to provide a highly educated workforce."