Ramping up more child care as parents go back to work

WWNY Ramping up more child care as parents go back to work

WATERTOWN, N.Y. (WWNY) - Child care facilities are likely to get busier as more people go back to work and schools remain closed.

The YMCA has been watching 40 children of essential workers at day cares across Jefferson County.

"It's going really well. It's picked up quite a bit in the past few weeks and we are anticipating it growing more in the next few weeks," said YMCA Senior Director of Youth Development Bridgette Gates.

As parents head back to work, The YMCA likely will open care at 4 more schools.

"Everything is set up. It's been in limbo as we're waiting to expand," said Gates.

Cathy Brodeur of the Jefferson-Lewis Child Care Project says right now there 50 child care programs running in Jefferson and Lewis counties, with more coming.

"All of our providers are reporting that they have some levels of openings," she said.

Brodeur thinks child care is prepared for phase one and two of reopening, but once most people get back to work, problems from before COVID-19 could resurface.

"We are going to run into the same capacity issues that we had before. We have a hard time recruiting people to do child care," she said.

Meanwhile, Jefferson County is working with the state to try to open summer camps.

"It's been an ongoing issue for weeks. It will take the pressure off the current child care services," said county Legislature Chair Scott Gray.

Child care capacity will be monitored by the regional control room.

Copyright 2020 WWNY. All rights reserved.