FAQ: COVID-19 Agreements Between CCPU Members and the State of California

These one-time agreements with the State of California are essential for rebuilding our child care system and supporting both providers and working families. Yet both of these victories are only temporary, making our current negotiations over a long-term contract even more essential. Only through a strong contract can we build an equitable child care system that makes high-quality and affordable care available to all families, regardless of race, income, or zip code.

Please sign our petition today, and be sure to share it with your friends and family. By working together and ensuring your voice is heard, we can create real change in California and build a brighter future for every child and family.

Question: I have not received the $525 subsidized child stipend yet (from the February agreement). By when should I receive it? What do I need to do if I have not received it by the end of May?

Answer: Agencies are required to distribute the stipends within 30 days of receiving the money from the state. The state sent the money to most agencies in mid-April, meaning that most providers should receive their stipend by mid-May. If you have not received this money by the end of May, you should contact your agency. If you do not get a satisfactory answer, please contact your union organizer as well.

Question: What are the state-subsidized programs eligible to receive the $525 and $600 stipends?

Answer: Children supported through all state-funded child care and early learning programs should receive these stipends. Specifically, providers serving children in programs in the following list will be receiving the per-child ($525 and $600) stipends:

  • Alternative Payment Programs
  • Migrant Childcare and Development Programs
  • State Preschool
  • Family Child Care Home Education Networks
  • General Child Care and Development Programs
  • Child Care and Developmental Services for Children with Special Needs
  • CalWORKS Program Stages 1-3.
  • Note that Bridge program providers will also be receiving the stipends, although they will likely receive the $525 stipend at a later date than other providers due to a delay on the state end.

Question: When do we get our $525 stipend for the Bridge program?

Answer: According to the state, guidance is still forthcoming on the timeline for the Bridge program $525 stipends.

Which child care programs are not eligible for the $525 and $600 stipends?

Answer: Programs not named in the agreement will not receive the stipend, specifically federally-funded or county-funded child care assistance programs. This includes, but is not limited to, Early HeadStart (federal funding), LA Cares Program (county/city funding), and the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) (county funding).

Question: When should I expect to receive the $600 and $3,500 stipends?

Answer: The $600 and $3,500 stipends must be formally passed by the Legislature and signed into law by the Governor and then will go out in the next fiscal year, meaning sometime after July 1, 2021. The state has said that they will work as expeditiously as possible to get the money out to providers during the next fiscal year. The state is also required to give bi-weekly updates to CCPU on the progress of issuing these stipends once enacted.

Since providers who are temporarily closed or who only work with privately paying families don’t currently contract with agencies, how will they receive the $3,500 one-time stipend?

Answer: The state has not yet stated how exactly they intend to distribute the $3,500 stipend to providers who do not contract with an agency. We will keep you updated as we receive updated guidance.

Question: What is the process to get the stipends in providers’ hands?

Answer: Our second agreement needs to be approved by the legislature and signed by the governor. Because most of CDE’s childcare duties will transfer over to DSS in summer 2021, DSS will primarily be responsible for administering the $600 per child and the $3,500 stipends. Your union is in constant contact with the state, and we will keep you updated as we
learn more, including if any paperwork such as completing w-9s will be required.

Question: Which programs are eligible for the 16 additional non-operation days providers can use when we have to close due to COVID? Can I use these days if I get side effects from the vaccine? What do I do if the agency I contract with does not want to pay me for time off due to COVID?

Answer: Programs eligible for the 16 additional COVID closure days:

  • Alternative Payment Programs
  • Migrant Childcare and Development Programs
  • Family Child Care Home Education Networks
  • CalWORKS Programs 1-3

Providers are also able to use these additional days in case they have to close due to side effects from a COVID-19 vaccine. These paid non-operational days include reimbursement for children who are on variable or part-time schedules. If an agency does not pay you for time off due to COVID, remind the agency of the law and your rights, which will also be specified in state guidance after this agreement is signed into law. If the agency still fails to recognize your rights, contact your union organizer.  

First COVID-19 Agreement with the State of California

Agreement Reached: February 8, 2021

Assembly Bill 82 Signed by Governor Newsom: Tuesday, February 23, 2021

The members of Child Care Providers United reached their first COVID-19 agreement with the State of California on February 8, enacted into law later in the month. This victory wouldn’t have been possible without the tireless work of so many providers who kept the pressure on the state until they understood how vital our demands were to both CCPU members and families across California! AB 82 is helping providers meet additional COVID-19 operational costs of cleaning supplies, PPE, forced closure after exposure, AND keep child care open for essential workers.

Details of Agreement/Assembly Bill 82:

  • A one-time stipend of $525 per child enrolled in a subsidized care program in November 2020.
    • This includes children enrolled in Family Child Care Network programs.
    • The state is providing regular updates to CCPU on the stipend distribution progress, including when providers can expect to receive these funds.
  • Sixteen additional paid non-operational days when a provider closes due to COVID-19. This brings the total number of non-operational days available to providers to 40. These 16 additional days are available retroactively from September 1, 2020, to June 30, 2021.
    • The paid closure days also apply to Network providers, which wasn’t the case before this agreement.
  • A workgroup consisting of the state and CCPU members will meet to discuss spending priorities for the remaining available federal COVID-19 relief funding.
    • This led to our Second COVID-19 Tentative Agreement.
  • This agreement includes a grievance process to resolve any disputes that arise over it quickly.
  • Finally, while not part of the formal agreement, the state has agreed to spend over $150 million to continue expanding emergency childcare for essential workers.

Second COVID-19 Tentative Agreement with the State of California

Tentative Agreement Reached: Monday, April 19, 2021

Tentative Agreement Signed by Governor Newsom: TBD

This agreement will allow hundreds of millions of dollars in much-needed financial support to reach thousands of child care providers, helping many stay open or re-open.

This is our second and largest COVID-specific tentative agreement with the state, and we know how vital these funds are to making sure the needs of both families and providers are met without delay. Through online actions, phone calls, and in-person events, we’ve shown the power we have when we stick together and fight for what is right. We know child care is a critical part of our social infrastructure, and it’s time California’s leaders finally acknowledge this fact too.

Details of Tentative Agreement:

  • Waives family fees and reimburses providers in full for the Fiscal Year 2021-22.
  • Offers financial support to all licensed providers and family, friend, and neighbor providers serving subsidized children to address higher costs, fluctuating enrollment, and other economic hardship operating during a pandemic:
    • Provides a $600 stipend per subsidized child enrolled in a family child care home for all state-subsidized programs.
    • Provides a $3,500 stabilization stipend for all licensed providers, including those who are temporarily closed.
  • Provides 16 additional paid COVID closure days for all subsidized providers for FY 2021-22 to ensure they can re-open after shutting down to quarantine.
  • Continues child care subsidy policies to stabilize child care:
    • Reimburses providers based on enrollment, not attendance, and includes families on variable schedules or working part-time so that providers have stable funding and parents have reliable funding even if needing to shelter in place or quarantine for health concerns.
    • Waives signatures for families sheltering in place (until public health declaration ends).
    • Invests $25M in the Child Care Initiative Project (CCIP) to expand child care capacity and address unmet child care needs in geographies and with infants and toddlers. Funds will support new providers opening and assist closed providers in reopening.
    • Funds mental health supports designed to support the expertise, best practices, and well-being of providers and the families they serve impacted by COVID.
    • Grievance and arbitration process for any disputes that arise related to the agreement, ensuring more consistent and fair enforcement so that the rights of both parents and providers are respected.