This brief provides new estimates of what it would cost to sustain the child care system during the coronavirus pandemic. We estimate that at least $9.6 billion is needed each month to fully fund existing providers in the child care system. These funds would allow closed providers to retain their staff at full pay, be prepared to reopen at the appropriate time, and eliminate cost burdens for families whose providers are closed. These funds will also allow open providers to offer safe, comprehensive emergency care at no cost to an estimated 6 million children of essential workers.

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