May 1, 2020
May is National Foster Care Month! Visit the Child Welfare Information Gateway and the Children’s Bureau to help spread the word on ways to strengthen families and their support systems.

Our latest blog from APHSA's hunger fellow Chloe Green, highlights exacerbated disparities among racial groups brought about by COVID-19. The blog realizes this critical time for hunger, and looks at equitable policy priorities moving forward.
You can continue to access our COVID-19 policy analysis, collection of federal guidance, updates, and resources here . And on this first day of May we remember the words of Lady Bird Johnson, "Where flowers bloom so does hope."
Child and Family Well-Being
Children's Bureau Releases Letter on Title IV-E Flexibility
The Children's Bureau within the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) has released a new letter to child welfare leaders that details flexibilities that exist in IV-E programs to deliver services for youth and families during the COVID-19 pandemic. Flexibilities highlighted include:

• Enhancing foster care maintenance payments;
• Modifying licensing standards for foster homes;
• Allowing youth to re-enter extended foster care;
• Providing hazard pay for caseworkers; and
• Extending Chafee services to age 23.

ACF Releases Tip Sheet on Using CCDF Amendments During COVID-19
The Office of Child Care (OCC) within the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) has released a comprehensive document to help state agencies identify where flexibility may be needed in response to COVID-19 and how the Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF) could be used to meet those needs. 

HHS Issues Letter on PPE for Child Welfare Workers
The Deputy Secretary for the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued a letter to Governors urging them to prioritize child welfare workers for personal protective equipment (PPE) by classifying them as Level 1 emergency responders, citing lack of access to PPE as a barrier to meeting face-to-face obligations.

OCC Released Child Care Waiver Approval Summary
The Office of Child Care (OCC) within the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) has released the first round of waiver approvals submitted by state agencies in response to COVID-19. OCC has approved a variety of requests including relaxing some health and safety requirements and program eligibility requirements.

Employment and Economic Well-Being
FNS Releases Blanket Waiver for QC Reviews
The USDA Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) has released a blanket waiver for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program ( SNAP) Quality Control (QC) Review process during COVID-19. The guidance establishes that states will only be required to complete reviews for nine months out of the year and reduces the number of cases needing to be sampled for the year.

DOL Issues Guidance on Emergency Unemployment Relief for Government and Nonprofits
The Department of Labor’s (DOL) Employment & Training Administration issued guidance on Monday instructing state and local governments, applicable nonprofits, and Federally recognized Indian tribes on implementing emergency unemployment relief, as authorized under Section 2103 of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security ( CARES) Act. These entities may be eligible for partial reimbursement of funds paid to employees for unemployment compensation.

FNS Posts Guidance on P-EBT and Emergency Allotments Reporting
The USDA Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) has posted new guidance on reporting requirements for Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer (P- EBT) and Emergency Allotment benefits issued through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program ( SNAP). Authority for both initiatives was established through Congressional action in response to COVID-19.

DOL Issues New Rules for Paid Leave Under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act
The Department of Labor’s (DOL) Wage and Hour Division issued temporary regulations for administering the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act (EPSLA) and the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act (EFMLEA). EPSLA and EFMLEA apply to public agencies, including state and local governments.

From Our APHSA Partners
European Social Network Partnership & Webinar with APHSA
Last month, APHSA President and CEO, Tracy Wareing Evans, joined leaders from across the globe for a webinar hosted by the European Social Network (ESN) focused on ensuring continuity of care in times of crisis. In March, APHSA formally announced a partnership with ESN to enhance the work of both associations, who share a core allegiance of working to advance the well-being of all people and build stronger communities.

Making Contact: A Training for COVID-19 Contact Tracers
The Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO) and National Coalition of STD Directors (NCSD) announced the launch of a free, on-demand training for entry-level COVID-19 contact tracers. The course will support ongoing public health agency efforts to prepare new contact tracers for their work of helping identify COVID-19 positive cases and those they've been in close contact with.

New NGA & ASTHO Report – Roadmap to Recovery: A Public Health Guide for Governors
This report from the National Governors Association (NGA) and the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO) synthesizes and expands expert recommendations by outlining ten key steps and related operational considerations for governors to guide critical decisions in support of the public’s health and well-being in the weeks and months ahead.

New Interactive Urban Institute Tool – Where Low-Income Jobs Are Being Lost to COVID-19
The neighborhoods hardest hit by COVID-19 job losses are home to workers in industries like tourism and transportation, which are bearing the brunt of the economic shutdown. To identify which neighborhoods are most at risk, Urban Institute estimates how many low-income jobs have been lost by residents in each census tract or are at risk when stay-at-home orders are in place. They hope that this tool can help nonprofits, foundations, and government target support where it’s most needed.

Upcoming Webinars
How to Use Place-Based Data to Promote Health Equity During COVID-19
Join Salud America! to learn how their Health Equity Report Card can help you visualize and explore place-based health inequities in your county, and build a case toward solutions. Speakers will discuss how inequities contribute to disparities in infectious and chronic disease; how you can use local data, interactive maps, and comparative gauges to identify your local health inequity issues; and look at evidence-based research and emerging ways local communities are addressing health inequities.

Thursday, May 7, 2:00 PM EST
APHSA Webinar: Navigating the Storm: Supporting our Workforce through Traumatic Times and Beyond
Human Services professionals perform heroic tasks each day despite the many challenges of the job. Responding to the needs and appropriately supporting staff is a critical role leaders must play. Join APHSA and Dr. Beth Cohen of the Organizational Mind Group for this online workshop offering information about these psychosocial impacts, wellness indicators, and tools to promote resilience and post-traumatic growth. The health and well-being of our workforce is critical to the success of the children and families we serve.

Thursday, May 7, 3:00-4:30 PM EST
APHSA Career Center - Post Your Open Positions Today

APHSA serves as a clearinghouse for job opportunities throughout the health and human services (H/HS) field. Employers reach a wide audience of candidates looking for careers in H/HS and job seekers will find a bevy of opportunities throughout the country.