Forgivable Loans for Child Care Providers Through the CARES Act

The bipartisan Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act—which became law on March 27—is the third stimulus package in a series of bills designed to mitigate the harm of our current economic and public health crisis. Child care providers—who are predominantly women, disproportionately women of color, and already underpaid—are feeling the strain acutely as they scramble to serve children of essential workers, remain viable through closures, and support their staff and families.

The CARES Act dedicates significant resources to the Small Business Administration (SBA) to help small businesses, nonprofit organizations, and self-employed individuals stay afloat and to incentivize them to retain their workers. Eligible child care programs should quickly take advantage of SBA relief while limited funds are available. This fact sheet provides a basic overview of the SBA’s forgivable loans that could offer some relief to child care programs—and also demonstrates why loans are insufficient to solve the problem for providers and families.