YOUR TURN: Readers debate daycare issues
This "It's Your Turn" includes comments posted on the Echo Press Facebook page in response to a Dec. 27 letter to the editor, "Let market decide child care."
Bernie Obrigewitsch: Sounds like he thinks you can just open a daycare. It takes many classes, many inspections, and money to do improvements the state says you need to make. Then the state makes it hell to stay open! If we had honest people that we could trust to not abuse the kiddos, the state would be a non-player. Unfortunately, that is not the case!
Derrik Strickler: I may be wrong, but I don't feel like the writer is saying everyone should be turning to family members as child care. I think his point was that plenty of people have been raised by family members or other unlicensed child care providers and it wasn't to the detriment of society. I think his issue is with people looking toward government for a long-term solution to a problem that could and would be solved without burdensome government regulation.
Randy Olson: Who's asking for government regulation? The issue is simply that the state is public enemy No. 1 for independent daycares. Period.
Brian Hedstrom: Lack of care is the issue. So maybe the city/area can make some incentives to start up daycares? Or help some providers get up and running by waiving some fees and regs until they can get operational.
Taryn Lee Berg: This guy is spot on, and I'm saying that as a new parent who is having trouble finding childcare. The demand is there, the market needs to catch up and provide the supply but it won't happen overnight. You know what screwed us and a bunch of other families out of perfectly good child care? Government regulation. So perhaps we allow people to provide daycare unlicensed without penalty as long as they're clear about it to parents. One could also argue that they could provide child care as long as they're working towards becoming licensed. Licensed facilities could charge a premium rate for their efforts, and would maintain a larger customer base since they can provide subsided care.
Mary Thompson: They opened up a daycare in the school. Going good. Hope this is the answer.
Tammy Ricord Drewes: I closed my 22-year-long career in child care a couple years ago. One of the main reasons for me was the vicious circle that has been created. The state is requiring more and more trainings, and since they are required, the persons offering the trainings raise their costs, causing providers to raise their prices.
Amy Lecy Rieke: The letter just seemed to say, "Hey, there's a need people! Just start unlicensed daycare and make money while fulfilling the need for daycare. Who needs the government? Well, the government makes rules for unlicensed daycares too. So the government needs to start listening to and working with providers.
Ginger Mayer: I just closed my daycare this July. I do miss the kids but I don't miss the lack of communication between licensor and providers. The inconsistency of information that she told one provider was different than she told another.
Katie Noyés: This is so dumb. 1. There is extreme need for daycare in Douglas County. 2. there is also a extreme need for nighttime or overnight or weekend care. It's impossible to find a daycare that has shifts open after 5-6 p.m. or on Saturdays. And good luck finding an infant spot.
Diane Barnard Lehn: I do sometimes question a call for less regulation. I will also state that I am rather unaware of many regulations and not wholly informed. So bear that in mind when I ask what makes a regulation unnecessary? From where did the regulation first originate and what was its purpose? I believe in regulation and safety expectations but I also believe in common sense, which is not always very common.
Christine Walker: My mom closed (her daycare) after 40 years. Same reason. They had her jumping through hoops.
Kelsi Timm: I am a licensed daycare provider in Douglas County and the paperwork and 16 hours/year of continuing education is a little ridiculous. I have friends in health care and they don't even have this many CE hours. I'm all for accountability and making sure that kiddos are getting the best care possible, but the paperwork and the rules and regulations constantly changing is exhausting.
Grant Goldman: As a parent, I am wondering which regulations providers feel should be nixed? I dislike government over-regulation, but I also know most of it wouldn't exist if people consistently did the right thing. Agencies like OSHA exist because they don't. When we leave our kids in the care of a licensed provider, we know certain safety criteria and background checks have taken place.