27 Mar Finding Safe Child Care When Working From Home Isn’t an Option
In light of COVID-19 concerns and the resulting mandates to socially distance, most child care centers are shutting their doors to help prevent the continued spread of the coronavirus. Those “limited duration” child care centers that are open, have a limited number of spots and are reserved for children of first responders, medical professionals, and other “essential workers.” For many parents that are unable to work from home, this leaves them in a difficult situation. How do they continue to report to work and provide for their families when child care options are becoming more and more limited?
One option some parents are turning to is utilizing family, friends, and other babysitters to care for their kids while they work. If you are considering finding alternate child care, it is important to ask yourself key questions about any potential caregivers to ensure your kids are safe and healthy while you are away:
-How do they treat others in their life (partners, parents, friends, family, etc.)?
-Have you witnessed them getting angry or impatient with children in the past?
-Do they ever call children bad names or put them down?
-Do they think it’s funny to scare children?
-Do they tell you or act as if kids are a nuisance?
If your answer is yes to any of these questions, your child could be at risk in their care. A good rule of thumb to consider before leaving your children in the care of others: would you trust this person with your wallet? Never leave your children with someone if you haven’t taken the time to assess their ability to provide proper care, and don’t assume that because they are family, friends, partners, or neighbors that they will have your child’s best interest at heart.
It is also important to provide caregivers with any important information about your child or your family that they may need to know while caring for your children. Make sure to clearly communicate the following:
-Where you will be while away and how they can get in touch with you
-An additional emergency contact
-The names and numbers of your children’s pediatrician and other healthcare providers
-A list of allergies and medications for each child
-How your children can be soothed and calmed
-What activities your children enjoy
-Any schedule expectations (mealtimes, naptimes, etc.)
These are strange and difficult times we are living in. However, even with the added stress and concern you may be experiencing, it’s important to remember that you know what’s best for your children.