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Parents’ Just-in-Time Work Schedules Are Not Working for Babies: A Policy Brief

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Infants and toddlers thrive in environments of stability with trusted caregivers, but irregular and unpredictable work schedules mean many families lack the ability to ensure such an environment for their young children.

Unpredictable work schedules can affect and possibly undermine key ingredients of healthy development: economic security, interactions with trusted caregivers, parental or caregiver well-being, and routines young children can count on.

Across the United States, life upended by unpredictable work schedules is the reality for many families. A recent study found that nearly three in four workers with low wages experience last minute shift changes inevitably impacting their families as well. Research indicates developmental concerns in young children whose lives are consistently upended by inconsistent parental work schedules.

Read our policy brief to learn more about unpredictable work schedules and the impact they have on child development, and to learn about what policies are important to ensuring healthy child development and economic security for families.

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