The COVID-19 pandemic has had a devastating impact on child care providers, causing widespread layoffs and closures nationwide. Significant declines in enrollment paired with steep increases in operating expenses have created an unsustainable financial situation for an industry that traditionally relies on razor-thin margins. Recognizing the essential role of child care for children, working families, and the economy, Democrats and Republicans in Congress have sought to prioritize funding and other relief opportunities for child care providers as part of ongoing COVID-19 recovery efforts.
In each of the four major relief packages Congress has passed, the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) has been a primary mechanism for providing funding to child care providers and for ensuring access to child care for thousands of working families – including essential workers. This timeline details when the bills were enacted, when the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) allocated funds and provided guidance to states, and deadlines for reporting and spending the dollars.