“Town Crier” newsletter – Briefs from the Region (2) – 4/2/20
Got children? Well, if you live in Montana and several other states that have shuttered “nonessential” businesses, chances are the apple(s) of your eye are beginning to go rotten. Ok, maybe not rotten, but there’s no doubt parents across the state have been struggling to focus on work with children—normally at school, a daycare facility or under the ward of a nanny—running around the house due to COVID-19 closures. While many schoolchildren have shifted to online education models, the youngest members of the house still need all the in-person TLC they’d normally receive at a daycare facility. Following Gov. Steve Bullock’s March 26 directive, those facilities were deemed nonessential to help flatten the curve. Good news for parents: According to a Montana Public Radio article, daycare facilities received an essential status designation on April 1, with some caveats: “Gov. Steve Bullock is ordering child care businesses to first serve children of parents that are deemed essential employees working in fields such as healthcare, law enforcement or in grocery stores … The directive says facilities should serve no more than 24 children at a time and to separate groups of 10 or fewer children in different rooms while maintaining the same groups day to day.” Facilities unable to comply are required to cease operations.