California Governor Gavin Newsom signed an executive order on Saturday that will help essential critical infrastructure workers have better access to child care and food for their children.
The Governor's Office said the order allows the California Department of Education and California Department of Social Services to waive some eligibility and enrollment priorities in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
This will allow child care to prioritize essential workers, including health care professionals, emergency response personnel, law enforcement and grocery workers.
However, priority for abused and neglected children will not be impacted.
In addition, the order states that the Department of Education and the Department of Social Services will jointly develop and issue guidance on how child care services should be prioritized, as well as guidance on how it can be provided as safely as possible. This guidance will be issued no later than April 7.
The order also allows the state to provide pandemic Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits to children.
The California Department of Social Services and the California Department of Education will identify students who may be eligible for the pandemic SNAP benefit as a way to reduce food insecurity and ensure children receive nutritious meals at low or no cost.
The text from this executive order can be read here.
For more information on how California is responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, click here.