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COVID-19 Resources: For Families

The latest resources on Coronavirus Image

UPDATE: Child care in Oregon is closed unless operating as Emergency Child Care. For more information, click here.

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 early.learning@state.or.us.

Frequently Asked Questions: For Families

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

Yes, essential workers should still be given priority but as Oregon reopens other families will need care to return to work. Providers have flexibility to serve more families with the phased reopening.

Q: Is it safe for my child to be with children of another essential worker who may have more risk of exposure than the essential worker(s) in my household?

There is no evidence that children of an essential worker are any more likely to have or to transmit COVID-19 than other children.

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.

Q: 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


STEP 2:
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 children@211info.org.
  • 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: Should children wear cloth face coverings?

It is unlikely that a young child will be able to effectively wear a cloth face covering in a manner that might contribute to the effective reduction in virus transmission. Infants and sleeping children should NEVER wear a cloth face covering. Children over two years of age and up to five years of age should be supervised if they are wearing a cloth face covering. If the cloth face covering is creating discomfort or resulting in the child touching their face frequently, reconsider whether a cloth face covering is appropriate for your child. PLEASE NOTE: A cloth face covering is not a replacement for frequent hand hygiene.

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.