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I already have child care. Can I switch to a homeless voucher?

Produced by Massachusetts Law Reform Institute and Greater Boston Legal Services
Created May 2009

9. I already have a part-time DTA child care voucher. Can I get a full-time homeless childcare voucher instead? 

Yes.  You can change your part-time voucher to full-time child care if you have a homeless voucher.

Ask your DTA worker to give you a homeless childcare voucher.  Your DTA worker will fax your shelter and your Child Care Resource and Referral agency an “authorization” for a full-time voucher.

10. My child is already in a “contracted slot.” He or she has a spot at one child care center and I can’t switch to another child care program.  Should I still get the homeless child care voucher? 

Yes!  If you can get a homeless child care voucher, use it to pay for child care at the child care center that you use.

Your contracted slot is attached to one child care center. You cannot use your contracted slot at another child care center.

Homeless vouchers give you choices. They are not attached to any one child care center. You can take a voucher anywhere in Massachusetts. You can change day care centers if you move or if you want to send your child somewhere else.

Homeless vouchers give you a way to keep getting child care if your situation changes. Your contracted slot may not give you a way to keep child care if your situation changes.

11. What is a “homeless contracted slot?” If I take one, do I lose my spot on the “income-eligible” wait list?

        A “contracted slot” is a space at one child care center, saved for your child. The slot is only at that one child care center. You cannot use it at any other child care center. A “homeless contracted slot” is a child care spot that is saved for homeless families. If you are on the “income-eligible” wait list, you may be offered a “homeless contracted slot.”

If you accept a “homeless contracted slot,” you will lose your place on the wait list for an income-eligible child care voucher. But if you take the “homeless contracted slot” and then you find housing, you will get an income-eligible voucher or another contracted slot.

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