Report Finds Violations in 4 Mid-Michigan In-Home Day Cares, 20 Statewide

By: Anthony Sabella Email
By: Anthony Sabella Email

At Trinity Lutheran Child Care Center in Lansing, the staff always needs to be one step ahead of the kids they're watching.

"They are curious, they want to get into things, so we as adults need to look over the environment and make sure we foresee what they might possible do," said Vicki Dulebohn, Human Resources Director.

A safety first mentality that includes plugging up outlets, taking away choking hazards and removing anything that could be dangerous.

However, not every day care in the state has the same mentality. According to a report from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, inspectors made 20 unannounced stops at Michigan in-home child care facilities between June and August of last year.

Every home checked had at least one violation of the state's licensing requirements. Photos of some locations show easy access to chemicals, rusty nails and dirty areas where food is prepared. There were also several cases of staff without background checks.

Of the 20 checked, three homes were in Ingham County and another in Clinton County, although all staff members at the locations had background checks done. The Michigan Department of Human Services says those findings reflect those in many state inspections.

"On a good number of occasions, we do find violations like this and I think it shows we have really strict standards," said Spokesman Bob Wheaton.

Wheaton says that because the department requires those problems to be fixed immediately and another inspection soon follows. If the issues aren't resolved, a day care's license can be revoked.

"We make sure that those violations are fixed so parents don't have to be worried that their children are in unsafe environments," said Wheaton.

The DHS says most of those day cares in violation have been inspected again, with previous issues resolved.

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