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Bay County Chamber of Commerce launches Childcare Task Force Survey

PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) – In an effort to assess the current childcare needs in our community, The Bay County Chamber of Commerce launched a new Childcare Task Force Business Survey.

Open now till July 15, the survey questions will address the concerns of both employees struggling with childcare options and local businesses finding absenteeism issues and low productivity levels.

In coordination with the Early Learning Coalition of Northwest Florida, Chamber Officials said the data from the survey will lead to identifying potential solutions and strategies to improve access to affordable, high-quality childcare for working families.

Chamber President and CEO, Patrick Chapin, said, “We’ve heard stories after stories after stories about single parents not being able to find quality care which is limiting their work viability. The Florida Chamber actually did a survey and its 5.4 billion dollars of lost economic impact to the state of Florida. So, we really want to drill down to Bay County and find out what is happening here specifically and then start working on solutions.”

The Early Learning Coalition also encourages anyone that is interested in getting assistance in childcare or developmental screenings to go to Early Learning Coalition of Northwest Florida.

Tami Valdez, Early Learning Coalition Community Development and Special Projects Director, said, “Ninety percent of the brain is development between birth to five, so our future is our children right now. If they are not getting a strong early learning foundation, they are not going to be the best employees once they get there. Our workforce in the future is our children today.”

The online survey link can be found here or on the Bay County Chamber’s Facebook page.