Overall, childcare is unaffordable for most families, and it is often more cost effective for a parent or guardian to drop out of the labor force or to choose work or a career that is not ideal. The U.S. Department of the Treasury noted that currently the childcare sector is in “market failure,” which is when the market produces too much or too little of a good or service as compared to what would be best from a societal perspective. Childcare is a private market where the cost for both consumers and childcare business owners is too expensive, and those who work in the industry do not earn a living wage. Childcare/Pre-K spoke leaders, affiliates, and participants will wrestle with these issues and consider solutions for Utah through training and education, public policy, business engagement, and more.
Executive Director, UCB
Kabi Catalano is the Executive Director of Utah Community Builders, which addresses pressing community issues for Utah’s workforce. Key areas of cross-sector collaboration include family-friendly work, upward mobility, and mental wellness in the workplace.
VP of Public Policy, UW SL
Elizabeth Garbe is the Vice President of Public Policy for the United Way of Salt Lake and is a passionate advocate for children and families in Utah. She has worked to pass legislation in education, health, and financial stability, with a strong focus on early childhood education.
Senior Policy Analyst, VUC
Anna Thomas is the Policy Director at Voices for Utah Children, a non-profit and non-partisan statewide policy organization committed to realizing a Utah where all children have the opportunity to thrive.
To make Utah a place where more girls and women can thrive, the Childcare/Pre-K spoke leaders, affiliates, and participants are currently working to craft bold goals for 2026 and 2030. These goals will be linked to measurable outcomes, connected to visual dashboards, and will be posted in June of 2023. Through finding, collecting, and visualizing data for this spoke, changes over time can be tracked and utilized to create momentum for additional changes.