We are heartened by the swift action Congress has taken to address the COVID-19 pandemic and encourage the House and Senate to take additional steps to address infants and toddlers. The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) was an important accomplishment that will provide critical supplemental resources to address this pandemic and represents a down payment on what American families and the economy needs to weather this public health event. We strongly urge the House and Senate to finish the job by taking up additional legislation that contains crucial support for families struggling with both the public health as well as the extended economic disruptions of COVID-19.
While the policies included in FFCRA begin the process of stabilizing life during the pandemic, many of its provisions do not go far enough to fully support today’s families with infants and toddlers. As the State of Babies Yearbook: 2019 showed, these families already are disproportionately low-income (45% of infants and toddlers live in low-income families). Babies experience high rates of food insecurity as well as living in crowded housing. The impacts of the current crisis will hit them and their families particularly hard. The following policy proposals are crafted to ensure the safety and well-being of all families, especially those with infants and toddlers, most susceptible to the COVID-19 public health and economic contagion