Mar 10, 2022 Press Release

Robin Hood Poll Finds New York Business Leaders Support expanding Child Care Subsidies Through State Budget

Over three-in-four New York business decision-makers (76%) favor making more people eligible for childcare subsidies

A majority of business decision-makers say that lack of child care is a “serious” problem for their business

Decision makers at larger New York State businesses have stronger support for expanding child care subsidies through the state budget

New York, NY – Robin Hood, New York City’s largest poverty-fighting organization, today released results from a statewide poll showing New York State business leaders overwhelmingly support expanding child care subsidies through the state budget, which is due at the end of the month. The poll found that 76% of business decision makers support making more families eligible for child care subsidies so that the state would cover full child care costs for a family of four making below $106,000 would — lifting tens of thousands of New Yorkers out of poverty. More than one third (37%) of business leaders “strongly” support this policy, which goes beyond what Governor Kathy Hochul proposed in her Executive Budget. Last week, a poll released by Robin Hood found New York State voters supported expanding child care subsidies beyond the Governor’s proposal by a 2-to-1 margin.

“We applaud our leaders in Albany for making child care a focus of budget negotiations. This poll makes clear that both business leaders and everyday New Yorkers don’t want incremental change. Accessible, high-quality child care is, of course, an investment in the future of our children and is essential for parents and caregivers who are seeking to get back to work. But it is also a business imperative, especially as we recover from the pandemic,” said Richard R. Buery, Jr., CEO of Robin Hood. “Expanding our state’s investment in high-quality, accessible child care will help parents return to work, prepare children for the future, reduce child poverty by 12%, and get our economy back on track post-pandemic. New York needs investments that enable New Yorkers to be good parents and reliable employees — and that means we need child care now.”

“Childcare continues to be a tremendous challenge for working parents in New York State. The pandemic, which shined a light on the need, has also created an opportunity for New York lawmakers and regulators to envision and create a better childcare system with quality as the foundation and equitable access to those in need of care,” said Heather C. Briccetti Esq., President & CEO of The Business Council of New York State.

“Access to quality, affordable childcare for employees of our small businesses is essential to the livelihood of New York and to the nation’s economic recovery. We are grateful to Governor Hochul for her commitment to childcare in the proposed executive budget, as small business owners employ 50% of the private sector workforce in New York. I join my fellow small business owners in calling on the Legislature to prioritize access to high-quality childcare in this year’s state budget. It’s not only a smart investment but also an economic imperative,” said Jessica Johnson-Cope, Chair of Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Voices New York Leadership Council and President of Johnson Security Bureau in The Bronx, NY.

In addition to equipping more children with the tools and experiences that are needed for future success — including the 100,000-plus children aged 0-3 in New York City who live in poverty — expanding access to child care is critical to our post-pandemic economic recovery. A recent analysis found increasing state investments to help families access quality, affordable child care would lift 84,000 New Yorkers out of poverty, allow 76,000 single parents or secondary earners to re-enter the workforce, increase income for 1.2 million families, and reduce the child poverty rate for babies and toddlers across the state by 12%.

The poll supports these findings, with a majority (52%) of business decision makers in New York State saying that the lack of child care is a “serious” issue for their business. Nearly half (45%) say a lack of child care has increased stress and burnout for their employees, while 2-in-5 say the lack of child care has worsened employees missing days (40%) and needing to leave early or late (39%). Nearly a third (31%) say lack of child care has made productivity worse.

Decision makers from New York State businesses of all sizes overwhelmingly support expanding state child care subsidies through the budget, with the largest businesses providing the strongest support:

  • Small businesses (1-49 employees): 67% favor, 27% oppose
  • Medium businesses (50-249 employees): 74% favor, 22% oppose
  • Large businesses (250-1000 employees): 84% favor, 15% oppose
  • Enterprises (1,000 employees or more): 82% favor, 18% oppose

Overall, 76% of business leaders are in favor of making more New Yorkers eligible for child care subsidies so that a family of four with a household income of $106,000 would not pay for child care — far beyond what Governor Hochul proposed in her Executive Budget. These business decision makers also strongly support specific policy changes that are being debated in Albany, including:

  • Fully subsidizing child care for those making four times the poverty limit or less (70% favor, 28% oppose);
  • Capping payment for families making $250,000 or less at 7% of income (69% favor and 28% oppose); and
  • A $45,000 minimum salary for child care workers (77% support and 21% oppose).

Support from business leaders for the policy is high across the state, with 82% of business decision makers in New York City in favor, along with 68% in the New York City suburbs and the rest of the state.

To read a memo on the poll, click here.

The survey was commissioned by Robin Hood and was conducted by HarrisX within New York State from February 11th – 16th, 2022, among 2,132 registered voters in the state—this includes oversamples of key regions and business decision-makers in the state. The survey was administered online and the sampling margin of error of this poll is plus or minus 2.1 percentage points. The results reflect a representative sample of New York registered voters. Results were weighted for by age, gender, region, race/ethnicity, income, and party when necessary to align with their actual proportions in the population. Each oversampled audience was weighted back to their proportion in the state (using known variables from the Census, party registration, and BLS data), making the effective weighted sample size 1,066. Business decision makers are defined as 1) manager level or above and 2) key decision maker or significant input on hiring and budget decisions (managers must be the key decision maker).


About Robin Hood:

Robin Hood has been fighting poverty in New York City since 1988. Because Robin Hood’s board covers all overhead, 100% of every donation goes directly to the poverty fight. Last year, Robin Hood awarded nearly $172 million in grants, filling a critical void during the COVID-19 pandemic by providing cash assistance, meals, housing, healthcare, education, and other urgent needs to one million New Yorkers impacted by COVID-19, as well as funding an array of programs and initiatives developed to elevate families out of poverty in New York City. Follow the organization on Twitter @RobinHoodNYC and learn more at


MEDIA CONTACT: Alaina Berner,