Simplified Child Care Application Kicks Off New Portal to Make City Services More Accessible to New
NEW YORK – New York City Mayor Eric Adams, First Deputy Mayor Sheena Wright, and New York City Chief Technology Officer Matthew Fraser on Wednesday, March 29th, announced the first phase of the launch of the MyCity portal, a one-stop shop for city services and benefits, that will make it easier for New Yorkers to interact with and access the support of a multitude of city agencies. Beginning today, MyCity users will be able to easily check eligibility, apply for, and track services and benefits in the city’s 10 most common languages, as well as securely save their information and documentation for future applications as they apply for child care. The launch of this first phase of MyCity delivers on a promise made by Mayor Adams to create a user-friendly interface that allows for the close collaboration of the numerous agencies involved and provides easier access to city government for New Yorkers. Later this year, the Adams administration will launch phase two of the MyCity portal to assist job seekers and small business owners.
“New Yorkers are busy 24/7 so today we are making it easier for New Yorkers to access city services — 24/7,” said Mayor Adams. “The newly launched MyCity online portal will allow New Yorkers to go online, easily search, apply for, and track city services and benefits right from their smartphones or computers — and we’re starting by spotlighting child care. For the first time, families who need help paying for child care can apply in one place, with one application. We are using the power of technology to reduce the bureaucracy and red tape in our government, to help New Yorkers get the services their taxes pay for, and to ‘Get Stuff Done’ for the working people of this city.”
MyCity will rebuild city services from the ground up to meet the modern needs of New Yorkers. Anyone with an internet connection on their phone or computer will be able to log onto mycity.nyc.gov using their IDNYC login or by using an existing email address to authenticate their account. For government agencies, MyCity will act as a centralized data repository that enables greater information sharing across government agencies to achieve faster results for New Yorkers.
The launch is the result of a cross-government collaboration between OTI, ACS, DOE, the New York City Department of Social Services, and the New York State Office of Children and Family Services. Before today’s launch, the city conducted months of user-testing sessions where New Yorkers unaffiliated with the project shared invaluable feedback.
Today’s phase one launch features the new streamlined child care assistance application, which sets a new benchmark for digital government services by consolidating a complicated paper application used by multiple government agencies (DOE and ACS) into a single online form that is expected to serve tens of thousands of New Yorkers annually and dramatically reduce the often confusing and time-consuming elements of the paper application as New Yorkers apply for and receive assistance. Once an application is submitted, agency staff will review the application and provide status updates to applicants through MyCity. Families will also be able to self-screen to determine whether they may be eligible for assistance before they even apply. Reducing the need for paper applications — the majority of which were rejected because of missing required documents — will further streamline and improve the application process. Families will still be able to mail in paper applications if they prefer that option. Phase one of MyCity also directs New Yorkers to existing resources for small businesses owners and job seekers, as well as to the city’s benefits screener.
The first phase of MyCity’s launch not only continues Mayor Adams’ efforts to expand access to affordable child care services, but also does so by streamlining government and breaking down silos. In June 2022, the Adams administration released “Accessible, Equitable, High-quality, Affordable: A Blueprint for Child Care & Early Childhood Education in New York City,” which expanded access to child care for the city’s 500,000 children under five years old and committed to making $800 million in additional child care investments over the next four years — raising allocated funding for child care spending to approximately $2 billion.