New study reveals challenges faced by working mothers in Texas

HOUSTON – Out of all 50 states and Washington, D.C., Texas ranks 33rd in the list of best states for working mothers, according to a new study.

More than 70 percent of mothers with young children are working today, according to WalletHub, which conducted the study.

When you compare Texas to other states in the study, the Lone Star State ranks highly in some categories and not so highly in others.

"I have a problem with dividing home and work," said Octavias Stewart, a Houston working mother of two.

Stewart and her husband both have jobs and she said sometimes she struggles to balance her career and spending time with her children.

"I believe I put in, like, a 12-hour shift every day, so half at home and half at work,'" Stewart said.

The new WalletHub study found, among other things, that Texas was third in day care quality, 33rd in percentage of single-mother families in poverty and 49th in average length of a woman's workday in hours.

The study analyzed three categories: child care, professional opportunities and work-life balance and the 50 states and the District of Columbia were evaluated using 13 key metrics.

To view the full study, click link here.

"We've got this antique school schedule," said Dr. Elizabeth Gregory, a Professor at the University of Houston.

Gregory is also the director of the women sexuality studies program and has written a book on women's work.

She said because Texas hasn't adopted mandatory early child care before kindergarten, mothers are having to work long hours to support day care costs. They often struggle with how many hours they have to keep their children in day care.

"The state and the government needs to think about the education structure and how it can support families the way they actually are today rather than working on a model that's out of date," Gregory said.

A positives is the quality of day care in Texas, and Courtney Vasquez she knows all about that because he son loves his day care.

"I mean, he gives her a hug when he leaves and it's great. I have no complaints," Vasquez said.