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Safety concerns about child care

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CTV News
Publication Date: 
21 Jul 2010

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The death of a toddler after injuries allegedly sustained at her day home has brought child-care safety into the spotlight.

"It's absolutely heartbreaking and terrifying. Every parent fears that when they walk out the door that something like this could happen," says Jennifer James, a Calgary parent.

There are 2,800 provincially approved day homes in Alberta and on Wednesday the minister responsible was doing damage control.

Yvonee Fritz says day homes approved by the province are safe and what happened in Medicine Hat is rare. "A vast majority of day homes have not had an incident of this type, in recent memory, and day homes have been regulated for over 30 years."

The day home at the centre of the Medicine Hat investigation was provincially approved and was part of an agency the province says it had a good 16-year relationship with.

To be approved by the province, day homes must meet 12 standards including strict monitoring, and criminal record checks every three years. When it comes to daycares, there are stricter standards which must be met before a licence is granted.

Alberta also has a voluntary accreditation system which it awards to childcare services meeting more than basic requirements.

Fritz says more than 80 percent of daycares and day homes are meeting the new level.


- reprinted from CTV News.