ODJFS to issue pandemic child care licenses


By Aimee Hancock - Miami Valley Today



MIAMI COUNTY — Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS) Director Kim Hall announced emergency action on Tuesday to provide child care to families where parents work in the health, safety, and essential service fields during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a press release from ODJFS. The agency will issue temporary pandemic child care licenses to ensure communities have access to child care.

The announcement followed an executive order signed by Gov. Mike DeWine on Tuesday establishing this license and allowing ODJFS to provide child care to families where parents work in the health, safety and essential service fields during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It is important that professionals who are essential to protecting the public are able to ensure their families have safe places to go while they are at work,” DeWine said. “Helping to address this need, allows our health and safety providers to focus on protecting and caring for all Ohioans.”

New temporary pandemic child care centers will operate under reduced regulations focused solely on the health and safety of children, the release states.

Pandemic child care center licenses can be granted to already existing child care centers or new child care centers that may be created in response to community needs.

According to the release, parents who are able should identify a safe and healthy alternative child care option during the pandemic that will keep their child(ren) out of a group setting and not with an elderly provider. However, ODJFS recognizes that this is not an option for all families and wants to ensure all children have a safe option while parents provide health, safety, and other essential services.

ODJFS and county agencies are responsible for licensing and inspecting all child care settings in Ohio. In addition, ODJFS offers financial assistance to eligible parents to help them with child care costs while they engage in work, education or job training.

Some local child care facilities have recently made the decision to close temporarily. Anna’s Early Beginnings, which has multiple locations in Miami County, and Future4Families, in Troy, will close at 6 p.m. Friday until further notice. Tipp City Enrichment Program will also close temporarily beginning Friday.

As of now, Milton Union Early Childhood Center, in West Milton, and Angela’s Circle of Friends Child Care, in Troy, are still open.

Lincoln Community Center, which provides an after-school program and additional activities for kids, made an announcement on its Facebook page that all LCC programming is canceled until further notice.

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By Aimee Hancock

Miami Valley Today

Reach the writer at ahancock@aimmediamidwest.com. © 2020 Miami Valley Today, all rights reserved.

Reach the writer at ahancock@aimmediamidwest.com. © 2020 Miami Valley Today, all rights reserved.