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Ginther, small business owners: Child care essential to economic recovery (Columbus Business First)

By: Carrie Gross Columbus Business First Access article

During the coronavirus pandemic, Haleema Shafeek enrolled her 11-year-old daughter in online schooling because of immunity issues. No slots were available at the few childcare sites offering safe e-learning "pods," and when one did open up, invariably it was too expensive.

The president of Columbus-based GOFS Commercial Interiors adjusted to a home office with her studious daughter quietly working alongside her.

But when it came time for an in-person meeting, she suggested her daughter could work at the opposite end of a conference room table – and heard back that the client thought that would be "unprofessional."

The pandemic pushed more women than men out of the workforce, in part because of disproportionate burden of childcare and supervision of e-schooling.

Blurred lines between work and home have forced a reckoning with the lack of affordable, quality early learning, said participants in a Friday panel led by Groundwork Ohio, an advocacy group for child development and a small business initiative of Goldman Sachs.


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