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Report: Some Massachusetts Families Spending Nearly Half Their Income On Child Care

BOSTON (CBS) -- A new report finds families in the U.S. are spending a quarter of their household income on child care, and the costs are even higher here in Massachusetts.

The County Health Rankings & Roadmaps report finds that families in Massachusetts spend between 27% and 46% of their household income on childcare. The report calculates the child care cost burden as the amount families with two children pay as a percentage of household median income.

The cost depends on where families are in the state. In suburban areas the burden is about 35%, but in large metro areas it's 46%.

Childcare Cost Burden Map_MA_0 (1)
The childcare burden map (Image credit: County Health Rankings & Roadmaps)

Families in Suffolk County, Bristol County and Cape Cod face some of the highest costs in the state, according to the report.

The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services sets the childcare affordability benchmark at 7% - but no counties in America are below or even at that level.

"High childcare cost burden can force families to make difficult choices between paying for basic needs such as housing, food, transportation, and medical care," the report states. "An affordable childcare system requires adequate public funding and enough licensed providers, especially in communities with more households with low incomes."

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