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Temporary Emergency Residential Care in the Child and Adult Care Food Program

EO Guidance Document #
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PDF Icon FNS Instruction (106.58 KB)
DATE: November 7, 1991
SUBJECT: Temporary Emergency Residential Care in the Child and Adult Care Food Program
TO: Regional Directors
Special Nutrition Programs

This Instruction establishes policy for temporary emergency residential care in family day care homes under the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP).

Current law and regulations limit participation in the CACFP by centers and homes to those providing nonresidential child care. There are two situations for which exceptions to this rule may be made: The first exception made is for the children of individual family day care providers for whom CACFP reimbursement is available if they are eligible for free and reduced price meals.

The second exception that may be made is for those situations where, due to circumstances beyond the parent's control, children need to be housed temporarily at a family day care provider's residence on a 24-hour basis. Such situations include those in which something unexpected happens and a parent is unable to pick up a child. When an emergency temporary residential situation occurs, these children may continue to be claimed by the provider for meals served to them within existing limitations on meals and days of operation.

In order to ensure the proper implementation of this policy, state agencies may permit this temporary care for a period for up to 3 consecutive calendar days. In establishing a temporary care policy, state agencies must avoid any conflict with licensing and other federal, state or local regulatory requirements and may establish other requirements which are intended to prevent its misapplication.

This policy interpretation is intended to provide program benefits to children who are otherwise eligible for them and must not be construed as an extension of those benefits where actual residential situations exist.

Samuel P. Bauer
Child Nutrition Division

Page updated: April 05, 2023

The contents of this guidance document do not have the force and effect of law and are not meant to bind the public in any way. This document is intended only to provide clarity to the public regarding existing requirements under the law or agency policies.