January 24, 2022
Family Care Updates
With COVID-19 cases surging due to the rapid transmission of the Omicron variant, both families and child care providers are under immense stress. The Office of Human Resources (OHR) has many new and existing resources available to support families with children.
Most importantly, we are asking supervisors to be as flexible as possible with all employees as they manage the unknowns of the pandemic within their personal lives and with their family care needs. Employees should work with their supervisors to discuss their individual needs, and supervisors can work with their HR business partner on solutions. Supervisors should refer to the HR Guidelines on Remote Work related to Coronavirus for guidance on flexibility. These are uncertain times, and OHR is committed to responding to the needs of employees as we weather this pandemic together.
We are here to support you during these challenging times in a variety of ways, including the following:
- Care@work Family Care Benefits: Eligible staff, faculty and graduate students have access to a free premium Care.com membership which comes with features pertaining to child care, elder care, pet care and household help. Be sure to check out the access to 15 subsidized backup care days as well as LifeCare Family, where specialists can assist with screening candidates for nannies or elder caregivers.
- Family Care Concierge Service: Our concierge service has assisted hundreds of families in the past year by connecting them with programs and resources that can help meet their needs. Contact the Family Care Concierge team for help finding child care, backup care, before and after care, summer camps, and much more.
- Guides and Resources: We strive to provide high quality guides and resources on our website. Below we have highlighted some of our newest documents, and we encourage you to visit our Family and Child Care Resources page to see what else might be helpful to you.
- Forming Care Shares & Learning Pods [pdf] — details ways to use CMU resources to connect with other families to share a nanny
- Summer Camps [pdf] — provides an overview of topics related to summer camps for children
- Navigating Elementary School Options: Finding a Program That Works for Your Family [pdf] — explains the difference between public, charter and private schools and provides relevant options and information for the Pittsburgh area
- Guide for New and Expecting Parents [pdf] — outlines some of the primary considerations related to welcoming a child, with special attention to the CMU programs, services and benefits that can help
- Adoption: Exploring Your Options [pdf] — explains different types of adoption and provides relevant resources
- Employee Assistance Program: Access complimentary counseling sessions, phone consultations with financial planners and attorneys, online articles and self-help tools; all EAP services are confidential and provided at no cost to you
- Work and Leave Options [pdf]: A comprehensive matrix by scenario and information about unpaid time off and unpaid personal leaves of absence
- CareLink: A wonderful resource for connecting with other CMU families and students; for parents, this can be a place to find baby sitters, tutors, and families to share care with; it is also a good place to find help with pet care and household chores if you live close to campus