TRENTON, NJ – Human Services Commissioner Carole Johnson and Children and Families Commissioner Christine Beyer today announced the state will continue to help pay for child care for essential employees as defined in Executive Order 110 through at least the end of May.

The Murphy Administration is helping support child care costs for essential workers during the COVID-19 emergency. Commissioner Johnson and Commissioner Beyer said the per child subsidy rates for essential workers previously announced through the end of April will now continue through the end of May.

“We value the amazing efforts of all of the essential workers who are helping New Jersey through this challenging and unprecedented time, and we want to make sure they continue to have the child care resources they need.” Commissioner Johnson said. “We also thank child care workers for their hard work and commitment, which is proving more valuable than ever during this critical period.”

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“Thousands of essential workers’ families are accessing safe and affordable emergency child care while they serve their state or community in vital roles during COVID-19,” Commissioner Norbut Beyer said. “Their work is crucial to New Jersey’s COVID-19 response and will be key to our recovery. DCF salutes their service and will work closely with DHS to support the continued availability of emergency child care.”

The state will continue to pay the following rates per week per child through the end of May:

Infant               $450.35

Toddler            $415.70

Preschool        $415.70

School-age      $336.00

Governor Murphy’s Executive Order 110 directed the closure of all child care centers except for those on federal property or military bases, family-based centers caring for five or fewer children and any centers that register to exclusively provide emergency child care services to essential personnel. 

Following a registration process, more than 500 childcare agencies statewide have been certified to provide emergency child care services.

Families choosing a child care center with higher rates will need to pay the balance directly to the provider, but such rates cannot exceed up to a limit of 110 percent of the rate the center charged in February 2020.

Essential employees who wish to utilize emergency care services must complete an online registration form available at www.childcarenj.gov.

The state-supported, county-based Child Care Resource and Referral agencies will reach out to those who register to assist with enrollment and placement.

The state will provide additional information regarding potential emergency child care assistance for essential workers past the end of May at a later date.

Executive Order 110 defines ‘essential’ workers as:

· Health care workers, including staff working in health care facilities and in community-based services including home health and behavioral health;

· Law enforcement personnel, fire and emergency services personnel, and correctional facility staff; 

· Individuals employed at emergency child care centers operating on or after April 1, 2020;  

· Staff working for entities that provide essential social services, including, but not limited to, group home and shelter staff; 

· Essential government employees who are unable to work from home, including child protection services workers, child welfare workers, foster care workers, unemployment compensation processing staff, and public health employees; and,

· Certain critical workers, as defined by the Commissioner of DCF, at essential retail businesses, as defined in Executive Order No. 107 (2020) and subsequent Administrative Orders, which includes, for example, grocery store and gas station employees.

 

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