first responders

Childcare for First Responders

What do you do for people who need to be on the job?

NBC Universal, Inc.

If there’s one group of people that absolutely have to go to work during this coronavirus crisis, it’s first responders and medical workers.

Sometimes it’s not the sickness taking them down, but rather, making sure they have daycare for their kids when many centers have been forced to close.

Kaitlyn Duley is with Ambulance Service of Manchester. She spoke with NBC Connecticut from her ambulance in East Hartford.

Duley said she’d love to be out of her vehicle and home with her three young boys, in the middle of a global pandemic, but she knows the community is counting on people like her. 

“That’s a little bit challenging, just trying to coordinate what I do with my kids during the day, when normally they’d be in school.”

Duley explained while she’s out on the road, her mother takes care of her kids, but she’s on a razor’s edge from not having child care, with few options if anyone in her family gets ill.  

She said she’s not sure what would happen in that scenario.

“I hope I can stay out here as long as I can, hopefully through the whole thing without getting sick or anybody else getting sick.”

In some cases, local governments are making exceptions when it comes to permitting larger child care centers to remain open, if some of the kids there are children of first responders or medical workers.  New Haven is one of those communities.

New Haven Mayor Justin Elicker said on the steps of city hall, “I have amended my previous order regarding the closure of childcare providers to add in addition to the exemption for public health care workers and exemption for first responders.”

The business development manager at Ambulance Service of Manchester, told NBC Connecticut "We are working on a case by case basis with any employee who experiences a scheduling issue during this pandemic. We have great flexibility with our scheduling process and have been able to make adjustments as necessary to accommodate our team members."

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