City of Chicago, Sittercity to provide childcare to first responders, healthcare workers fighting COVID-19 crisis

CHICAGO (WLS) -- First responders and healthcare workers now have one less thing to worry about.

As many of us work from home, first responders and healthcare working are on frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic. Barley having a chance to rest - let alone see and take care of their families, state and local officials are working to help take a little bit of the load off their shoulders.

Just one day after Governor JB Prtizker's "stay-at-home" order took effect across Illinois, the City of Chicago launched a new initiative to help its workers find reliable childcare.

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Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced the launch of partnership with Sittercity, America's first online resource for in-home care, to offer childcare for Chicago's most essential workforce who continue to work on behalf of the city amid COVID-19.

A new, dedicated website will allow nurses and doctors, cafeteria workers and firefighters, and anyone else deemed an essential part of the infrastructure helping Chicago stay safe, to find reliable childcare to allow them to continue their critical work.

"During this unprecedented challenge to our city, we need everyone stepping up and doing their part," said Mayor Lightfoot. "I applaud Sittercity for doing just that by providing a gateway to the critical childcare needed by our fellow Chicagoans working on the front-lines to stem the spread of COVID-19 and maintain essential services for our communities. As we have throughout our history, we will get through this crisis together as a united people, and ultimately grow stronger as a result."

The initiative will provide three free months of SitterCity Premium and will connect those on the frontlines of fighting this crisis with volunteers, such as teachers and daycare providers, to help care for their families during this time.

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"As a company full of working parents and former sitters, we understand the challenges facing first responders with schools and daycares closed," said Elizabeth Harz, CEO of Sittercity. "By facilitating and managing the connections between families and caregivers, we are happy to do our part in supporting the work of the Chicagoans on the frontlines in the fight against this pandemic."

Those interested in either volunteering, or those in need of childcare, can register on the Sittercity website.

Sittercity provides tools to help families build a childcare support network with detailed profiles, secure messaging, interview scheduling and background check options. Care seekers simply post a job to the platform detailing their needs - including dates, times, and the number and age of children. The job post is shared with available caregivers in the area who can choose to apply.
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