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Texas Workforce Commission to provide 12 months of free childcare to restaurant workers

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The Texas Workforce Commission has launched a subsidized childcare program that will provide 12 months of free childcare to low-income, service-industry parents. - UNSPLASH / AARON BURDEN
  • Unsplash / Aaron Burden
  • The Texas Workforce Commission has launched a subsidized childcare program that will provide 12 months of free childcare to low-income, service-industry parents.
It’s no secret that financial hardships caused by the ongoing pandemic have been particularly hard on folks in the foodservice industry in San Antonio, a city whose economy is heavily reliant on service sector jobs.

Now, the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) is looking to relieve at least one hardship by launching a subsidized childcare program that will provide 12 months of free childcare to low-income parents who are employed in the pandemic-wrought industry.

TWC has an existing childcare subsidy program designed to assist low-wage workers in paying for the cost of child care, but the new Service Industry Recovery (SIR) program will use federal COVID-relief funds to provide an extra focus on workers in the service industry.

“TWC’s child care assistance program provides an important subsidy many Texas families use to enter the workforce,” TWC Chairman Bryan Daniel said in a release. “This Service Industry Recovery program provides additional funding to ensure service industry employers maintain access to quality child care as they play an important role in the state’s economic success.”

The program targets low-wage workers in the arts, entertainment and recreation industry, as well as accommodations, food services and retail trade — industries which were most impacted by the pandemic.

The $500 million program is funded by a Child Care Development Block Grant through the federal CARES, ARPA and CRRSAA recovery legislation passed by Congress. The SIR program is being implemented through grants to the Workforce Development Boards across Texas.

Service workers interested in applying can find their local board at the TWC website.

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