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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2021 - 2022 Regular Session


Posted: August 30, 2021 10:28 AM
From: Senator Judith L. Schwank
To: All Senate members
Subject: Masking in childcare facilities
The shortage of affordable, accessible, and available childcare existed before the pandemic and was a significant barrier for workers seeking opportunities; that shortage is now exacerbated because of the pandemic and has proven to be an even greater barrier to employment. 
Childcare barriers are holding workers back, especially women who have been forced out of the labor market in disproportionately high numbers due to family care needs. 
In line with the goal to keep schools open for our K-12 students, we similarly need childcare facilities to remain open so parents and caregivers can return to work with peace of mind that their youngest are being cared for in safe environments. Childcare facilities remaining safe and open is critical to getting our workforce and economy back on track and paramount to family stability.
That is why I will soon introduce legislation to require indoor masking in early childhood education and childcare programs (ECE) within classrooms for those over the age of 2, regardless of vaccination status, unless there is a medical condition or disability that dictates otherwise. Masking is the easiest way to prevent transmission of Covid, and the aggressive Delta variant.   
All our livelihoods are connected to keeping children safe in schools and while in childcare facilities, and we should be doing everything in our power to keep them there. 

Please join me in sponsoring this important piece of legislation.