coronavirus in new england

Emergency Day Care Facilities Open in Mass. for Children of Essential Workers

NBC Universal, Inc.

Day care programs across Massachusetts closed Monday amid the coronavirus pandemic, but some facilities remained open for the children of essential workers.

The closures came after Gov. Charlie Baker ordered all early education centers and family child care providers to close by Monday as cases of the novel coronavirus continue to climb in the state.

However, childcare is still available to parents considered essential workers including emergency personnel and medical staff as well as grocery store and transportation workers.

Hundreds of emergency drop-off centers will be designated across the state. Click here for a complete list.

Families working with the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families as well as families in shelters can also use the facilities.

While daycare facilities have closed across the state, one Dedham daycare operator wants to help those who are helping others.

Tonya Munchbach, who runs a childcare center in Dedham, said she would take extra precautions to make sure the daycare and toys are cleaned and sanitized constantly.

Families "seemed really happy, ecstatic that I was doing this," she told NBC10 Boston and NECN. "They didn’t know what to do and it’s a little bit of peace of mind.”

Other child care workers worried about their businesses.

“This is where it’s — I have to let (employees) know. It’s not anyone’s fault. It isn’t," said Tracey Nardone, a preschool owner. "But I have to be the one to tell them, ‘I’m sorry, tomorrow’s paycheck is the last one you’re going to get for a while.’”

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