COVID-19 Updates and Resources

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Behavioral Health Supports | Childcare | CYFD Population Updates | Food Assistance |
Juvenile Justice Updates | News | Resources | Return to School


The following information, resources, and updates are listed to direct you to child welfare, juvenile justice, childcare, and behavioral health needs for children and youth related needs you may experience during the COVID-19 public health crisis.

COVID-19 is a highly infectious and fast-spreading virus. Symptoms and their effects can range from mild to severe and in certain cases result in extreme health complications and death. Positive cases have been identified in communities across New Mexico. State health officials continue to test, process, monitor and track instances of the virus — and the state of New Mexico has taken proactive, aggressive public health actions to mitigate the spread of the disease.

For more information, please visit the New Mexico Health Department’s website for the latest news, guidance, and wide range of resources related to COVID-19 in the state.

COVID-19 vaccinations are now available to New Mexicans age 12+. Vaccines distributed by the state and federal government are safe, effective and free. For vaccine safety guidance and answers to common questions, please reference this document produced by NMDOH.

To register for the vaccine in your community, go to

Spread of COVID-19 is more likely when people are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet). Anyone that is able should continue to maintain social distancing, wear masks in public, and reduce trips and travel.

Health Questions?
Call the NM Health Hotline: (855) 600-3453 or visit the NM DOH website

Non-Health Questions?
Call the NM Information Hotline: (833) 551-0518

In Need of Mental Health Services?

Options available to the community are detailed here or call the New Mexico Crisis And Access Line at 855-NMCRISIS (855-662-7474) any time. You do not have to be in crisis to call and services are free.

No Health Insurance?

Anyone without health insurance, no matter their immigration status, can receive free COVID-related services including Testing for COVID-19, Treatment of COVID-19, Vaccines for COVID-19. A federal Uninsured Program pays for COVID-19 services provided to anyone without health insurance. This program is explained in detail on this HHS fact sheet.

To apply for Medicaid or other benefits, please visit the NM Human Services Division benefits application site.

Questions about child welfare cases, juvenile justice or children's behavioral health?
If already involved with CYFD you can call the staff person you normally work with.

Questions or Concerns about Child Abuse or Neglect?
CYFD is continuing to investigate reports of suspected abuse or neglect.

Reports can be made by calling 1-855-333-SAFE (7233).


Childcare Information


Visit for the most up-to-date information available regarding childcare availability and assistance during the public health emergency and to see a list of available childcare providers


Food Assistance


Free Meals for Children
Need to find free meals for your child or children? Please go to to view the list of meal sites, contact information, and available hours for grab & go meal packs. Summer food locations can be located at

Senior Food Hotline: (800) 432-3080

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) to New Mexican households
The New Mexico Human Services Department will be providing additional SNAP benefits to New Mexico households, doing everything in its power to ensure that New Mexicans do not go hungry while facing the challenges of the #COVID19 pandemic. For more information, click here.


Updates for CYFD Populations 


Updates for Protective Services:

Protective Services Division FAQs - April, 2020* English | Español

Learn to recognize signs of child abuse & neglect online: Go to NMSU E-Learning

CYFD is continuing to investigate reports of suspected abuse or neglect. Our Statewide Central Intake office is still receiving, assessing and appropriately logging and fielding calls to Investigations.

Any person who suspects a child or young person is experiencing abuse or neglect can call #SAFE from any mobile phone or call 1-855-333-SAFE (7233).

*Information may be outdated as the pandemic continues, please reference the most up-to-date information as it is posted.


Updates from the New Mexico Supreme Court/Administrative Office of the Courts:

Press Release & Court Order - May 22, 2020 - NM Supreme Court provides legal framework for resuming in-person family visits in abuse and neglect cases. English

Press Release  - April 27, 2020 - Suspension to continue on court-ordered in-person family visits in abuse and neglect cases. English

Press Release & Court Order - Marh 27, 2020 - New Mexico Supreme Court suspends in-person CYFD family visits for at least 30 Days in response to COVID-19 outbreak. English


Updates for Caregivers:

Thank you for the work you are doing to support the youth in your care.

Foster families and the children and youth in your care are facing new and incredibly intense challenges. Below you can find updates from department leadership on changes related to COVID. 

Letter - December 23, 2020 - Holiday updates with information on child care, continued extra payments of $100/child per month and behavioral health resources for the holidays. English

Letter - November 12, 2020 - Resources and supports for students and partents as COVID numbers reach record levels. English
Letter - April 29, 2020 - Information for foster families on the NM Supreme Court's ongoing guidance to have visits made via video/phone. English | Español
Letter - April 10, 2020 - Information on increased monthly maintenance payments. English | Español coming soon
Letter - March 27, 2020 - Information for foster families on the New Mexico New Mexico Supreme Court order suspending most in-person visitation, to be replaced with video or phone visits.  English | Español
Letter - March 20, 2020 - CYFD Caseworkers’ monthly visits to children and to foster homes will now be done via video conference as often as possible. English | Español
Letter - March 18, 2020 - Updated guidelines and resources from NMDOH, CYFD, the Governor's office and more. English | Español
Letter - March 13, 2020 - Initial guidelines that were issued about COVID-19 in New Mexico, including information from NMDOH and specific CYFD changes. English | Español



Updates for Families:

We know the public health crisis can bring additional stress and uncertainty to families who are currently separated, including the restrictions on in person visitation.

We will send out as much information as possible. Please reach out to the CYFD staff person on your case if you need additional information or supports. 

Letter - April 29, 2020 - Information for biological families on the NM Supreme Court's ongoing guidance to have visits made via video/phone: English | Español
Letter - April 7, 2020 - Information for biological families on the New Mexico Supreme Court order suspending most in-person visitation, to be replaced with video or phone visits: English | Español


Updates for Independent Living Youth:

Letter - April 20, 2020 - COVID Crisis One-Time Payment Support for Independent Living Youth. English | Español coming soon
Letter - Information about one-time payments. English | Español coming soon


Updates for Juvenile Justice


During the COVID crisis and beyond, the safety of detained and committed young people is one of CYFD’s utmost priorities. Through decades of juvenile justice reform New Mexico has reduced the juvenile justice population significantly over the past two decades.

Report - May 7, 2020 Juvenile Justice COVID-19 Report
This document describes the reforms that have taken place that have led to limited populations, state run detention facility responses to the COVID crisis, and recommendations given to county run detention facilities. English | Español

FAQs - April, 2020* English | Español

*Information may be outdated as the pandemic continues, please reference the most up-to-date information as it is posted.


Behavioral Health Supports



New Mexico Department of Human Services: Isolation, Grief, Loss & Trauma During COVID-19.


The New Mexico Crisis and Access Line (NMCAL)

The New Mexico Crisis and Access Line (NMCAL) is a statewide mental health crisis line for anyone who resides in the State of New Mexico and is concerned with suicidal thoughts, substance use, grief, and other behavioral health issues.

NMCAL is a centralized, single telephone number to get immediate assistance and resources for mental health and substance use issues. The line is free and is answered 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. 

24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, toll free

1-855-NMCRISIS (662-7474)

TTY 1-855-227-5485

711 for relay (hearing & speech impaired)


The New Mexico Peer to Peer Warmline

The Peer to Peer Warmline offers assistance and an understanding ear to New Mexicans who are just wanting someone to talk to about mental health, substance use, or recovery. The Warmline is available to call 3:30pm-11pm or text 6pm-11pm 7 days a week, 365 days a year.

Working in close coordination with the existing professional resources of NMCAL, the Warmline is an expansion of NMCAL’s professional counselor-staffed crisis line, providing confidential non-crisis support from specially trained specialists who have in the past had their own behavioral health or substance use issues.

Call 3:30pm – 11:30pm or text 6pm – 11pm every day

1-855-4NM-7100 (466-7100)

711 for relay (hearing & speech impaired)

Language services available 24/7


NMConnect App

The New Mexico Crisis and Access Line (NMCAL) is excited to announce the NMConnect smartphone app for all New Mexicans.

Key features:

  1. Directly connect to a counselor or peer support worker;

  2. Directly text a peer support worker;

  3. Access up to date resources for substance use, mental health services, and other community resources;

  4. Updated information on the state response to COVID-19.


Apple App Store Link:


Google Play Store Link:


The Apple Logo® and App Store® are registered trademarks of Apple Inc.
Google Play and the Google Play logo are trademarks of Google LLC.

Helping Children Cope (English & Spanish)





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For People with Disabilities
New Mexico Disability, Access and Functional Needs (DAFN) Resource Guide: This guide provides a comprehensive list of services and information for New Mexicans, e.g. service animals, teaching and access to education, mental and spiritual tips, employment, food safety, health assistance, and emergency numbers, to name a few.





COVID-19 Prevention Tips and Symptoms and Help
Download a Poster:

NM COVID-19 Prevention Poster NM COVID-19 Prevention Poster COVID symptoms   COVID symptoms




For Children, Youth and Families
Families Supporting Student Learning at Home: This resource guide from the NM Public Education Department (PED) Provides a variety of ways parents, families, and caregivers can support children and young people with learning from home.

How To Create Meaningful Family Time with Young Children: This guide from CYFD's Behavioral Health Division (Infant Mental Health) and the Irving Harris Foundation offers advice for meaningful family time with young children using research, reflection, and relationships.. - Resources from on home learning and more!

Unity in Community Zine: This zine is meant for youth and young adults to learn more about how they can be a part of stopping the spread of coronavirus and protecting elders.


Watch the Video!


Vaccinate Your Children

COVID-19 Parental Resources Kit: Ensuring Children and Young People’s Social, Emotional, and Mental Well-being from the CDC

How to Talk to Kids about Coronavirus: Information and resources from PBS.

How to Talk to Teens about Cornoavirus: Information and resources from KOB-TV and CYFD

"Stay at Home Hero" Book/Coloring book: This coloring created by Tatiana Tucker that provides caregivers with a tool to discuss the Coronavirus crisis with children and all of the complicated feelings and worries they might be facing.. “Stay-at-Home Hero” empowers children on how they can help, whether that means making a friend smile with a phone call or even just staying at home.

Learn about the Coronavirus Coloring book: This coloring book created by St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital is intended to teach kids about the coronavirus and what we can do to prevent spread.

Children’s storybook - Our Smallest Warriors, our Strongest Medicine: Overcoming COVID-19: This adapted story seeks to reach Indigenous peoples and portray a sense of communal efficacy, strength and hope in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Made by Us: Join the Albuquerque Museum and others across the country in collecting images that capture the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the people of New Mexico.

Improving Sleep While Working from Home: With the lines between work and home have become blurred due to widescale Work From Home arrangements, difficulties with sleep have increased exponentially. Check out tips to help get better, more restful sleep. 

Return To Classroom Resources

NMPED Ring The Bell: The latest return to in-person learning resources from the New Mexico Public Education Department.

Schools and Child Care Programs: CDC Guidance on Back-to-Classroom including a parent guide to help decide whether in person or remote learning is the best option for your child.

Young Adult Resources from the CDC:

Additional Information

*Information may be outdated as the pandemic continues, please reference the most up-to-date information as it is posted.