Wellington County considering options, needs for emergency child care

New service announced by province will be available to health care and other COVID-19 frontline workers

GUELPH – Wellington County is considering several options to possibly offer emergency child care for COVID-19 frontline workers.

The county made the announcement late in the day on March 22, hours after the provincial government announced it would facilitate the service.

Those eligible include doctors, nurses, paramedics, firefighters, and police and correctional officers.

“We need to help our nurses, doctors and frontline care workers to be able to focus on protecting the health and well-being of all Ontarians,” stated Christine Elliott, deputy premier and health minister.

“By allowing select child care centres to open their doors during these challenging times, our province’s courageous frontline workers can rest assured knowing that their families are also being looked after.”

In Wellington County, officials will assess needs through an online survey. Options being considered are in-home child care, child care in a provider’s home, and limited centre-based child care.

“The county recognizes that courageous health care and other frontline workers must continue to provide their important work,” stated Luisa Artuso, director of the county’s Children’s Early Years Division.

“The county is making every effort to support these workers through the provision of a licensed child care arrangement.”

Officials add the county is working closely with Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health “to ensure we do everything possible to support the health and safety of all those helping to deliver emergency child care in our communities and the children and families who will be accessing it.”

Eligibility requirements and the needs assessment survey will be available on the county’s website on March 24.

Once emergency child care centres open in Ontario, a list of locations will be made available on the province’s COVID-19 website.

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