Resources for Working Parents

Working parents have faced unprecedented challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic. Many of you have been asked to juggle work, homeschooling and child care – all while maintaining a sense of normalcy for your family. With the new school year underway, we know you may be concerned about how you will continue to perform your job responsibilities while your children attend school virtually from home.

HMH wants to make team members aware of several options that may be available to you depending on your job responsibilities and unique situation. While you consider these options and make decisions about what is best for your family, we encourage you to discuss your individual situation with your leader. Together, you should develop a plan to manage your unique situation and child care needs.

Please keep in mind that some options may not be feasible due to the business needs of your department.

The following options are listed in the order in which they should be considered. In other words, team members should first consider Option 1. If that option is not feasible for you, you may continue to Option 2.

You should start by learning about and taking advantage of the following resources and support available to team members with child care needs.

HMH’s Employee Assistance Program (EAP) provides team members with confidential support for both everyday challenges and more serious problems. Most EAP services are free to team members and include those related to child, family, and parenting support, adult and eldercare support, and educational resources. (Please note: Team members are eligible for EAP services regardless of whether they are enrolled in an HMH medical plan.)

To get started:

  • Visit (access code: HMHNEAP)
  • From the Life and Work menu, browse topics and related resources available, including Caregiving, Parenting, and School and Education
  • You can also call Optum at 1-866-407-5252 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and speak with a Worklife Specialist. They will ask questions about your particular situation, research your options, and report back to you. This is all at no cost to you and is a great benefit for busy working parents.

Click here for more information about HMH’s EAP.

The COVID Child Care Initiative, part of New Jersey’s allocation of the federal Coronavirus Relief Fund, provides subsidies assistance to help parents with child care costs due to remote learning schedules. The application is available on the New Jersey Department of Human Services website. To be eligible, you must:

  • Provide proof of income, training/school hours, and household size
  • Be a New Jersey resident
  • Meet income requirements and not have assets that exceed $1 million
  • Be working full time (30 hours or more a week), attending school full time (12 credits or more) or in job training (at least 20 hours a week)
  • Have child(ren) who meet the following eligibility requirements:
    • Must be 13 years old or younger, or less than age 19 if under the N.J. Division of Child Protection and Permanency’s protective supervision or mentally or physically incapable of self-care
    • Must be a U.S. Citizen or qualified non-citizen
    • Must reside with parent(s) or individual(s) acting as parent(s)

Please note: Depending on family size and income, you may have to contribute to the cost of care (pay a copay).

For more information, contact your county-based Child Care Resource and Referral Agency or call the Child Care Helpline at 1-800-332-9227.

New Jersey’s Child Care Resources and Referral Agencies (CCR&Rs) provide information to parents about the availability of child care services (related to the COVID Child Care Initiative above and other programs), the different types of providers and the financial assistance available to obtain child care services.

HMH’s Circle of Compassion continues to provide financial assistance with food, transportation, utilities, clothing, shelter, child care, or other financial hardship to many team members. Click here to learn more about the program and fill out the application form.

If the above tools and resources do not address your child care needs, please proceed to Option 2.

Subject to union negotiations. We are required by law to deal with the unions on behalf of unionized team members, and we will continue to do so. We will only negotiate with the unions, not with individual unionized team members.