The challenge of child care in the tri-state area — and beyond — is well documented and much discussed. Now, local efforts are zeroing in on one of the significant obstacles in addressing the issue — staffing.

According to national data, the U.S. has more than 80,000 fewer child care workers now than there were before the COVID-19 pandemic. Last year, the median pay across the country for child care workers was $13.22 per hour, according to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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