Dear Commissioner Lambrew and Dr. Landry,
On Friday, child care educators in Maine saw their priority in the vaccination distribution process removed.
We also witnessed a commitment to streamline the vaccination process for public school employees. Information about the streamlining for public school educators from Commissioner Makin included reference to Maine’s database of public school educators making the system more efficient and easier to administer. DHHS has a database of all licensed child care providers in the state, thus child care educators could be included in this streamlined process. Owners have licensing documentation they can provide and early education employees have employment documentation they can offer. Public school settings and child care settings face the same risks and challenges of COVID-19 exposure. If a vaccination divide continues between the public school sector from the child care sector, it confirms a perception of inequity for child care. More importantly, this also keeps Early Care and Education providers in harm’s way with exposure to COVID-19.
We are asking the Department to support child care personnel and request that the Administration include our sector as part of the streamlined vaccination process within the age groups. We are hoping we can count on you, Commissioner Lambrew and Dr. Landry, to support child care programs just as Commissioner Makin has supported public school employees in access to vaccines.n
Thank you for your hard work during this public health crisis. We hope for a quick resolution on behalf of all child care owners and employees in Maine.
- Deborah Arcaro, Family Child Care Association of Maine
- Cristina Salois, Maine Head Start Directors Association
- Tara Williams, Maine Association for the Education of Young Children
- Meg Helming, YMCA Alliance of Maine
- Tracye Fortin, Educare Central Maine