Child care providers in Modesto call for support amid COVID-19 pandemic

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MODESTO, Calif. (KTXL) —  Normally, the sounds of babies laughing and children playing would fill Jackson’s Jungle Daycare in Modesto, but instead, it’s been nearly silent.

Day care owner Kimberlee Jackson shut down her daycare Monday but told FOX40 she and other home child care providers are stuck in limbo. 

“For us, this is our only means of income. This is a family child care so it was very hard for us to close,” said Jackson.

The state department in charge of licensing is leaving it up to individual providers on whether to remain open or close down amid coronavirus concerns.

“We don’t know how we’re going to have any type of income come in to support our family but at the end of the day it boils down to being proactive and do what the schools are doing and doing our part to stop the spread because these children are perfect little carriers for it,” explained Jackson.

While many schools are closed, day cares can stay open. 

Gov. Gavin Newsom announced Tuesday that funds would be made available to help child care facilities remain open and clean. 

“We have senior citizen homes that are struggling to find their own hand sanitizers and gloves so how are home daycares going to be put first,” said Jackson 

Jackson says she feels the state needs to step in and order all day cares that don’t serve parents with essential jobs to close for health reasons. 

“They’ll be contagious and not even show symptoms and that’s the main thing. We can open our doors and let well children into our homes, they can be the perfect carriers for it but show no symptoms and then these children go home and they spread it to their family members,” said Jackson.

Jackson tells FOX40, she also feels home day care providers are being left out of the conversation when it comes to financial relief for teachers and small business owners. 

She believes more child care providers would shutdown to help stop the spread of COVID-19 if they had more support. 

“We need to be reassured that we’re going to be treated as teachers are being treated. We are educators,” said Jackson. “We are more than just babysitters that sit at home. We take our jobs very seriously and we should not feel that we are not going to get the help that we need.”

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