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COVID-19 Resources: For Families

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This page contains interim guidance based on what is known about COVID-19.
The ELD will update its guidance as additional information becomes available.

Call 211 in Oregon if you can’t find the answer you need online. They can give you general COVID-19 information.

Parents or caregivers of children ages birth to five years old can also submit questions, comments, or concerns related to COVID-19 by emailing

Frequently Asked Questions: For Families

Q: Can my child receive care from an emergency child care facility?

Families for whom child care is not absolutely necessary should keep their children at home to ensure caregivers who provide Emergency Child Care can serve Essential Workers, such as health care workers and other first responders.

Q: Who is considered an “Essential Worker”?

Click here for guidance on how to determine if you are an Essential Worker. Essential Workers are prioritized to receive Emergency Child Care. This includes first responders, emergency workers, health care professionals, critical operations staff and essential personnel, and other individuals working outside of the home.

If you are not considered an Essential Worker and child care is not absolutely necessary, you should keep your children at home. This helps ensure caregivers can serve those most in need.

Q: If I am considered an “Essential Worker,” how do I sign up for Emergency Child Care?

STEP 1: Check for eligibility to Employment Related Daycare (ERDC) assistance. ERDC assistance is available to all families at or below 85% of State Median Income (See table below). Click here to read the latest press release on the changes and here to view temporary changes.

ERDC Ongoing and Exit Income Limits

Number in ERDC Group Gross Income Limit
2 $4,012
3 $4,956
4 $5,899
5 $6,843
6 $7,787
7 $8,259
8 or more $9,192

If you qualify for ERDC assistance, enroll by contacting your local DHS field office or visiting the DHS website to fill out their form. For those who qualify, there is no cost for Emergency Child Care. For those you do not qualify for ERDC assistance, your Emergency Child Care provider will determine the cost of tuition.

STEP 3: To receive a customized referral to emergency child care programs contact 211info by:

  • Calling 211. Listen to the prompt for Child Care and press the specified number.
  • Texting the keyword “children” or “niños” to 898211 (TXT211).
  • Emailing
  • Click here to visit the website.

HOURS: Monday – Friday: 7 a.m. to 11 p.m.; Saturday – Sunday: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

From the referral list, you can choose the Emergency Child Care program that best suits your needs.

Q: Do I have to continue paying if my child care is closed?

Consult the agreement or contract you have with your provider. The Office of Child Care does not regulate this area. We ask that child care providers use discretion with their billing policies and practices so as not to penalize families who may be under financial stress due to the current situation.

Q: Is child care still safe?

We have instructed child care programs to follow the guidelines provided by the Oregon Health Authority, CDC, and the governor’s social distancing measures. Child care programs are experts in caring for children and meeting the needs of working families in our state. Regulated providers provide care that meets health and safety standards each day, and while child care businesses are operational, the Office of Child Care will continue to conduct critical health and safety inspections.

Families for whom child care is not absolutely necessary should keep their children at home to ensure caregivers who remain open can serve those most in need, such as health care workers and other first responders.

Q: How can I talk to my child about the coronavirus (COVID-19) in a developmentally appropriate way?

Children are likely curious as they hear increased public dialogue and experience changes to their daily life regarding COVID-19. The Center for Disease Control has resources for families to talk with their children about the virus.