Aiming to ensure a child’s safety during the transfer of care between parents and child care centers, Assembly Democrats Valerie Vainieri Huttle and Annette Quijano sponsor a bipartisan bill that would require parents and centers to notify one another of the child’s absence. After previously unanimously passing the Senate, the legislation unanimously passed the full Assembly Monday.
Under the bill (A-3277/S-559), parents/guardians would be required to notify a child care center if their child will be absent that day. If no notification is provided by the parent and the center does not know why a child is absent, they would be required to attempt to get in touch with the parent immediately.
Upon the legislation’s passage, Assemblywomen Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen) and Quijano (D-Union) issued the following joint statement:
“Every day, New Jerseyans trust the care of their children to child care providers. When our children cannot attend childcare due to sickness, a family obligation or any other reason, our child care workers are benefitted by being informed about a child’s absence.
“This legislation will help maintain lines of communication between families and child care providers. In particular, this communication is critical in the rare instances in which a parent or guardian leaves a child in a hot car because they are tired or distracted, oftentimes thinking that their child was already dropped off at childcare.
“By ensuring consistent communication between families and child care providers, we can help to bridge a gap that very well may save a child’s life.”
The bill, also sponsored by Republican Assemblywoman Aura Dunn, now heads to the Governor’s desk.