Parents who relied on a daycare centre on the east side of Saint John were left scrambling when it closed with little warning.
According to staff who worked at Played Out Fun Centre on McAllister Drive, they were caught off guard when property managers entered the facility on Tuesday afternoon to evict the operation.
“They just showed up and said they were shutting us down,” one former employee tells Global News.
“There was no warning. They showed up and said ‘we’re changing the locks.’”
Staff say the owner of the business was often unreliable with payroll, but never let on that rent wasn’t being paid.
They say over 70 kids were in their care every day.
They were left with hours to notify parents that they would need to make other arrangements for their kids beginning Wednesday.
“I found out when I came in to pick up my kids,” says Rebecca Cyr, whose two kids spent time at the centre while she was at school.
“My daughter came up to me and told me that the daycare was closed and I was like … what?”
Cyr praised staff at Played Out for the kindness they showed her children, and said the proximity to the New Brunswick Community College campus was essential for her.
“My only question is why? Why do this? Why no notice?” she questions.
Global News made several attempts to contact the business owner for a response, but didn’t hear back.
Staff say they haven’t heard from them either, left feeling frustrated.
“There’s been children here from age 2 to age 12,” one employee says, “they’ve been here pretty much their whole lives.
“This has been their home and now it’s torn apart.”