The One Utah Child Care program for essential employees during the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic will conclude the end of June, officials have announced. The program was created to provide free child care options with federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding for employees such as healthcare workers and first responders in need due to school closures.

With most of the state now moved to the low-risk (yellow) phase and summer program options opening, the emergency program has completed its purpose in helping ensure the health and safety needs of the public were met during the critical phase of this crisis. One Utah Child Care served 654 children in the state beginning March 30. Thirty centers were opened by providers for essential employees and additional slots were made available in existing programs for areas without One Utah Child Care centers.

“We are remarkably proud of the vital service One Utah Child Care provided to essential employees in our state,” said Tracy Gruber, Office of Child Care director for the Utah Department of Workforce Services. “This effort represents the collaborative work of so many in both the private and public sectors. The program was accurately named as it is an outstanding example of our state coming together as one.”