Article 20

Child Care

Section 1--Policy and Purpose

This article addresses the child care needs of SSA employees.  The parties recognize that working parents may have special child care needs during working hours.  The parties recognize the need for such parents to secure appropriate child care arrangements.  SSA, hereafter referred to as the Agency, will continue its efforts to secure adequate funding in order to support and foster child care services for its employees, consistent with this Agreement and SSA's funding policy (Attachment A:  "Child Care Funding Guidance").

Section 2--Child Care Activities

The Agency will continue to provide and/or support various activities in order to meet ongoing child care needs.  These may include, but are not limited to, such things as child care and parenting information, child care resource and referral information, workshops, and counseling as available through the Employee Assistance Program.

It is the Agency's intention to utilize available funds nationwide to foster local solutions to child care needs.  These may include construction of onsite facilities or near-site facilities, participation in shared facilities with other federal Agencies, establishment of mini-centers or other child care services.  The Agency will continue to work with GSA to establish child care services.

In accordance with P.L. 101-509 of the 1991 GSA Appropriations Act, the Agency agrees to pay legally permissible expenses for training, conferences or other meetings in connection with the provision of child care services for persons employed to provide child care services if the Agency determines that such training, etc., is relevant and necessary.  The Agency also agrees to pay similar expenses for Agency employees who have oversight responsibilities for the operation of child care facilities; e.g., members of local child care committees, board of directors, etc., if the Agency determines such training, etc., is relevant and necessary.

The head of each installation or the appropriate designee will provide inquiring employees with current listings of the qualified, licensed child care centers in the immediate area.  Recognizing that a broad range of child care needs exists, in compiling such listings, management will request specific information; e.g., age groups served, types of program offered, and special needs programs.