COVID-19 Has Nearly Destroyed the Childcare Industry—and It Might Be Too Late to Save It

By CCAoA on September 08, 2020


If there are mass closures across the childcare industry to the extent that experts predict, the failure of the government to act will have broader ramifications. Daycare providers who find themselves unemployed may never return to their profession. Daycare owners may abandon their businesses for more lucrative ones. Families may opt to keep a parent home to watch the kids. “Absent our collective investment in childcare, there really won’t be an effective community recovery,” warns Lynette Fraga, the CEO of ChildcareAware. “If we aren’t supporting childcare providers, there won’t be childcare to go back to.”

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Pandemic underscores the importance, inequities of child-care system

By Lynette Fraga, Ph.D. on August 23, 2020

Seattle Times

Op-ed by Jackie Bezos, president and co-founder of the Bezos Family Foundation, and Lynette M. Fraga, Ph.D., CEO of Child Care Aware of America.

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Coronavirus calculation: No child care, no economic recovery

By Lynette Fraga, Ph.D. on July 14, 2020

FOX Business

The coronavirus pandemic has hit every part of our economy. But while we hear so often about prominent businesses or industries affected by this, what does not get talked about is how it has devastated an industry that has served as a glue keeping the other parts of our economy together -- child care.

The child care industry is on the ropes and we must move quickly to save it.

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Advocating for Child Care During and After a Pandemic

By Lynette Fraga, Ph.D. on July 10, 2020

Exchange magazine

The coronavirus pandemic shows just how essential child care is.

Since March, many working parents across the country have scrambled to find alternative child care arrangements as schools and some child care providers closed because of the coronavirus outbreak. Those parents who were able to “work from home” struggled to balance work and being present for their young children, and less than 30 percent of workers can even work from home, according to the Economic Policy Institute. And while health care providers and other essential personnel put their lives on the line caring for others, who was taking care of their children?

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In-Home Child Care Could Be the Solution to Covid-19 Parent Woes

By CCAoA on July 01, 2020

“Covid-19 really has devastated the childcare system,” says Mindy Bennett, Deputy Chief of Partnership of the national child care advocacy organization Child Care Aware of America. “I’ve had community leaders tell me that they suspect that about 50 percent of their childcare have closed and will not reopen,” Bennett says.

Home-based child care, also known as family child care, ranges from informal baby-sitting (ie: Aunt Kathy down the block watches the kids) to larger groups of children and professional training. Because they’re operated from homes, these services have less space than child care centers. Usually, that means groups of five to 10 children of varying ages, with siblings kept together despite age gaps.

“Family childcare is a more home-like environment,” Bennett, a former home-based care center operator, says. “It may represent your home beliefs and culture more than a center.” 

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Without Child Care, There is No Economic Recovery

By Lynette Fraga, Ph.D. on June 26, 2020

Morning Consult

In this op-ed, Mark Shriver, President of Save the Children Action Network, and Lynette Fraga, CEO of Child Care Aware of America, write:

Can America reopen without child care? The answer is no.

survey jointly commissioned by Save the Children Action Network and Child Care Aware of America found that nearly 9 in 10 voters – 87 percent – support direct federal assistance for child care providers during the crisis so they can meet payroll and pay rent and utilities. Significantly, this support crosses party lines, with 82 percent of Republicans and 94 percent of Democrats in support.

In other words, the overwhelming majority of American voters want Congress to catch the quickly falling child care industry.

In order for Congress to sufficiently act, how many more op-eds and letters to the editor need to be published? How many more news stories need to run? How many more polls need to be conducted?

It is overwhelmingly clear. The child care industry needs help. The strength of America’s economy and the future promise of America’s children hang in the balance.

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Parents Going Back to Work After Pandemic Peak Struggle to Find Child Care

By CCAoA on June 24, 2020

WDET (NPR/Detroit)

The coronavirus pandemic has put a strain on the nation’s child care system. Many providers had to close due to stay-at-home orders that kept families away. 

Now, as those restrictions are being lifted, parents going back to work are having trouble finding child care.

Dr. Lynette Fraga is the CEO of Child Care Aware of America. She says 30 to 50 percent of the nation’s child care providers might have to close permanently and the biggest obstacle they face is the costs related to the pandemic.

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South Jersey summer camps' opening plans vary in light of COVID-19

By CCAoA on June 12, 2020

Press of Atlantic City

Lynette Fraga, CEO of Child Care Aware of America, said reopening child care centers and summer camps will be critical to restarting the economy in New Jersey and throughout the nation.

Her organization has a list of questions parents should ask their camps and child care providers as they reopen to ensure communication and safety, including how they will enforce social distancing and whether any COVID-19 cases have been found at the facility.

“Summer camps, just like school, frankly, during the school year, play a critical role in being a child care setting for parents when they return to work,” Fraga said. “What’s challenging, regardless of whether we name the summer care as camps or child care, is having the ability to open that care. Families are going to be very challenged, and there will be barriers for them to return to work.”

Child Care Aware is pushing for federal legislation that would increase funding for child care centers and camps. Some funding was included in the federal stimulus bill in response to COVID-19, and the state has also announced grant funding for child care centers and camps though the Department of Human Services to purchase additional cleaning products, personal protective equipment such as masks, gloves and thermometers, and other products and services to assist centers in complying with appropriate guidelines.

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How To Prepare Your Toddler For The New Normal At Day Care, According To Experts

By CCAoA on June 10, 2020


National child care advocacy groups like Child Care Aware of America continue to monitor the evolving processes and procedures, updating parents and caregivers with resources like new fact sheets every step of the way.

While it is of the utmost importance to prepare your child for a return to their new normal at day care, it is also beneficial to consider how your child's facility will continue to keep up with their new health and safety regimens. The organization urges parents and caregivers concerned about the impact of COVID-19 on child care to advocate for their family's needs by contacting their legislators.

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5 questions to ask before sending kids to camp or child care amid coronavirus pandemic

By CCAoA on June 09, 2020

KXAN (NBC/Austin)

Child care programs and summer camps are starting to open after shutting down because of the COVID-19 crisis.

Dr. Lynette Fraga of Child Care Aware of America helped create a list of questions parents should ask summer programs and child care centers to stay safe.

In order to try to avoid any cases or a possible shutdown of their facility, Dr. Fraga says child care providers need to prepare with personal protection equipment and sanitizing equipment, plus training and technical assistance for staff.

She also said Congress needs to help by providing support and funds so programs can stay open and keep kids safe.

“$50 billion is needed from Congress. It is so critically important for us to raise up the issue of child care. Without child care, our communities will not be able to stay open.”

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