Merkley took part in a round table discussion with Mayor Kitty Piercy, parents and child care professionals at the Vivian Olum Child Development Center on the University of Oregon campus.
Families went around the table sharing their stresses with rising costs.
“After paying rent, health care, car insurance bills, we don’t have really any buffer left and no money for child care,” said parent and student Rebekah Whittaker.
Senator Merkley says too many of the country’s economic policies are stuck in the 1950s. He says it’s still too difficult to get equal pay for equal work.