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Child needed care while parent worked

Codes and Frequencies

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KIDCNEED identifies children (under 14) who were reported to need paid child care while their parent(s) worked. Interviewers first asked whether anyone in the household paid for the care of their children while working during the previous calendar year, and, if the answer was affirmative, asked, "Which children needed care while their parents worked?" Preschool and nursery school counted as "paid child care"; kindergarten and grade/elementary school did not.

The variable KIDCARE, which is one of the "new welfare reform variables" added to the ASEC CPS beginning in 2001, indicates whether adults received, from a state or county welfare agency, assistance in the form of child care services so they could go to work or school or training. The codebooks for the ASEC CPS public use files also group KIDCNEED with other "new welfare reform items." However, the interview questionnaire does not seem to limit the universe for KIDCNEED to recipients of public assistance, and the KIDCNEED questions appear directly after queries about migration, which were asked of all persons. The IPUMS-CPS staff would appreciate further information about the interpretation of KIDCNEED from informed users.


This variable is completely comparable over time.


  • Persons age 14 and under.


Years Jan Feb ASEC Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
2001 – 2023 - - X - - - - - - - - -



Unharmonized Variables