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Healthcare workers depend on child care centers staying open

Posted at 6:59 AM, Apr 13, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-13 10:01:02-04

TUCSON, Ariz. - While the heroes out on the front lines work each day to take care of our community during this pandemic, they need help taking care of their own families. We spoke to a respiratory therapist that relies on child care centers staying open.

Schools are closed, but some child care centers like, La Petite Academy, remain open.

"It has been very helpful. It's nice just being able to go to work and relax and focus on what I need to do and know that my kids are taken care of."

For parents like Meghan Foreman, child care is a necessity."Especially right now in a pandemic being a respiratory therapist we're kind of on the front lines with the nurses as far as handling patients being around them," Foreman said.

With no family in town, Meghan and her husband rely on child care for their 5-year-old and 8-month-old so they can keep working. "There are many workers that have children, there are police officers, fire, hospital workers, there are grocery store workers they all have children and not everyone has child care in their family available," said Jon Aitken, the District Manager for Learning Care Group.

Aitken said overall, Learning Care Group has nine schools in the Tucson area. They are La Petite and Child Time centers.He says each school is stepping up their safety."We're doing the same thing. We're doing a lot of more, a lot more frequently and a lot more consistently across all of our classrooms, front office, back office, kitchen everything," said Aitken.

As far as social distancing guidelines, the district manager says parents must drop children off in the lobby and teachers will take them into the classrooms."Another thing that we've done is we are now doing temper scans for every person entering the building, staff, children,' said Aitken. Meghan says her son is definitely taking notice of the changes.

"They're doing a great job about minimizing contact with others just in case. I know my son says he washes his hands so much. So it's great. It's very comforting," said Foreman. Aitken also says Learning Care Group centers have experienced some furloughs and their attendance is down about 50 %, which is pretty consistent across the child care industry.