Senator Collins Cosponsors Legislation to Support Maine’s Child Care Providers, Families Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

Washington, D.C. — U.S. Senator Susan Collins cosponsored the Back to Work Child Care Grants Act of 2020, legislation introduced by Senators Joni Ernst (R-IA) and Lamar Alexander (R-TN) to provide assistance for child care providers in Maine and across the country during the COVID-19 pandemic.


“Child care providers throughout Maine are facing decreased enrollment and even closure as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Senator Collins.  “This legislation would provide much needed financial assistance and support to child care providers, helping to ensure that children have access to a safe learning environment during the pandemic and as parents and guardians return to work.”


The Back to Work Child Care Grants Act of 2020 would:


  • Provide nine-month financial assistance for providers to open, welcome children safely, and ensure a robust child care sector is available for families;


  • Allow states to design state-specific plans to support child care centers, operators, providers in their state;


  • Send funds to child care providers more quickly without administrative red tape;


  • Require all providers receiving assistance to follow all state and local health and safety guidelines; and,


  • Require states to ensure a diverse field of child care setting options for parents, including center-based, family child care, and faith-based options.


Throughout the pandemic, Senator Collins has worked to secure critical funding for Maine’s child care providers.  In May, Senators Collins and Angus King (I-ME) joined a bipartisan group of 23 of their colleagues in urging Senate leadership to provide additional support for the child care sector in future COVID-19 relief legislation.


Earlier this year, Senators Collins and King announced nearly $11 million to the State of Maine to provide child care assistance for low-income families, health care sector employees, first responders, sanitation workers, and other workers deemed essential, and to support child care providers. This funding was authorized by the CARES Act. 


Click HERE for the one pager and HERE for the text of the bill.