Story about mom who left 3-year-old alone sparks debate on child care costs

We did some digging to find out how difficult it is to find affordable child care in Texas.

HOUSTON - A lot of viewers reacted on social media after mother was arrested and charged when she left her three-year-old child in a motel room alone while she went to work. 

Investigators say that the child was found walking around the parking lot of a motel off the North Freeway. Reneo Mubita told deputies she had to leave the child alone because she had to go to work. She was charged with child abandonment and the child is now in the custody of Child Protective Services.

Many Facebook commenters sympathized with her because child care is often too expensive for single parents and low-income families. 

Pct. 4: Woman left 3-year-old alone in motel while she went to work

KHOU viewers had an array of reactions to the story:

We did some digging to find out just how hard it is to find affordable child care in Texas. Here's what we found:

  • When it comes to cost, Texas is in the middle of the pack with an average price per year just over $9,000. On average, that can take close to 40% of a single parent's annual income.
  • There are programs in Houston to provide financial assistance to parents who need help.
    • The Texas Workforce Commission will cover or a portion, or in some cases, all of the cost of childcare for working, low-income parents. 
    • The YMCA also offers financial assistance based on need.
    • The United Way helps families find low-cost options through their 211 helpline. 

© 2017 KHOU-TV


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