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Here is our monthly dose of “5-Bullet-Point Friday” a list of NJAEYC public policy stuff we think you might be interested in.

Anything that is BLUE, just click on it for more details

What’s going on in the US – NAEYC has released new national and state level data from their November survey of more than 6,000 providers across the United States. The startling results include: a) 56% of child care centers are losing money each day they remain open; b) 44% are confronting so much uncertainty that they are unable to say how much longer they will be able to stay open; c) One-in-four centers and one-in-three child care homes say that if enrollment stays where it is and no additional support comes forward, they will have to close in the next three months. That rises to 51% of minority-owned businesses who won’t survive more than three months at the current status quo; and, d) Nearly half of respondents know of multiple centers or child care homes in their community that have closed permanently. This includes 42% for those who are minority-owned businesses and rises to 56% for those who describe their community as suburban.

To read more click here.

From New Jersey, NAEYC received a total of 54 responses, 91% from child care centers and 9% from family child care homes. 82% of respondents from child care center and family child care homes said they are currently losing money by remaining open, even as they are desperately trying to stay open for the children and families they serve. 42% of respondents reported putting supplies or other items on their personal credit card or dipping into their personal savings accounts. 92% of respondents are paying additional costs for cleaning supplies, 75% are paying additional costs for PPE, and 79% are paying additional costs for staff, including 85% of child care centers, 50% are confronting so much uncertainty that they are unable to say how much longer they will be able to stay open. Of those who do know, 27% say they will have to close within three months, if enrollment stays where it is and they don’t receive additional public support. Lastly, 59% of respondents said they know of multiple child care centers and/or family child care homes in their community that have closed permanently.

To read more click here.

What’s going on in NJ – December 14, 2020 Advocates for the Children of New Jersey (ACNJ) hosted the virtual release of the 2020 New Jersey Kids Count Pocket Guide: The State of Our Counties. The informative talk took a deep dive into the data about New Jersey’s children and their families, highlighting the trends to drive positive change for kids in the Garden State. The release also coincided with the national KIDS COUNT report, Kids, Families and COVID-19: Pandemic Pain Points and the Urgent Need to Respond, a 50-state snapshot analyzing how families are faring during the COVID-19 crisis, developed by the Annie E. Casey Foundation using the U.S. Census Bureau’s Household Pulse Survey.

To read more click here and here.

Also, on Thursday, December 17, 2020 NJ Spotlight News hosted a Virtual Roundtable: Child Care in New Jersey: A Key to the State’s Economic Recovery. NJ Spotlight News outlined that child care is a basic need for countless families in New Jersey. But many working parents find it difficult – even under normal circumstances – to secure accessible, affordable, high-quality child care. The Coronavirus pandemic has placed further burden on families – as well as on employers and child care businesses – thus drawing increased attention to how the state’s child care system could be re-imagined. The virtual roundtable included government officials, policy advocates, and business representatives who discussed these key issues that impact child care in NJ.

To read more click here.

Just this week, the Department of Human Services, Division of Family Development announced an extension of several Covid-19 relief programs for providers and families through the end of January. To read about the extended relief click here.

What’s coming up– The New Jersey Economic Development Authority Wants to Hear From You! The New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA), an independent government entity that works to broaden and expand the state’s economic base by providing access to funding for small and mid-size businesses and nonprofits, is looking to see information and ideas on how to build the business capacity and sustainability of the state’s child care providers…and they need everyone’s input!

To respond to the RFI (Request for Information) click here.

Your Voice Is Being Heard! As we approach the beginning of a new year, NJAEYC feels compelled to reflect on the past year with all of us facing a global pandemic. Even as you, our early childhood community were faced with a myriad of obstacles both prior and during the COVID-19 pandemic. Your support enabled us to collaborate with other agencies and advocacy groups to focus on the immediate needs for early child care providers, their staff and for our children and families. Despite all of your daily demands you found the time to participate in our webinars, participated in surveys both on the state and national levels and joined our calls for action to our legislators to help to save child care in NJ. Through our united voices we urged our legislators and state leaders to help our child care workforce, our children and their families. Our voices were heard and we have their attention. NJAEYC extends our sincere thanks knowing that you offered your time and assistance as you were juggling so many other issues coming your way during the pandemic. You were all amazing and we appreciate your strong support and assistance. We still have more work to do. Let’s keep up this momentum into 2021 and elevate our voices once again to continue the conversations focusing on the need and value of child care. Please join NJAEYC as we move into 2021 to continue our work for the child care community. NJAEYC needs your voices in 2021.

Something you might like –On December 10, 2020 Child Care Aware of America (CCAoA) released the article, “New Papers Present Bold Ideas for Re-Envisioning the Child Care System” by Amy Ghadia. The article stated that there may be a glimmer of hope during the COVID-19 pandemic in that there is a chance to rebuild our child care system. Many may not be aware of child care issues until they have to face the difficulty of finding and affording care, or until an employee is unable to make a deadline or get to work because of a child care program closure. Therefore, CCAoA decided to think ambitiously about how we might take the lessons from 2020 and build a better child care system. A system that is affordable, accessible, provides children the healthy start they need, and one that is actively anti-racist.

To read more click here and here.

 

Quote we’re pondering – “Most of the important things in the world are done by people who keep on trying when there seems to be no hope at all”. – Dale Carnegie

 

Have a wonderful weekend, and a happy new year!

NJAEYC Public Policy Team