When Harm Visits The Innocent
No matter how much care you used choosing your daycare provider, you cannot help but feel a stab of anxiety when you hear about abuse occurring in other facilities. Sometimes, in spite of a parent's best efforts, abuse happens. You have the right to expect that your children are cared for in a healthy and safe environment, but daycare abuse can happen at the best of places. Read on for a guide on spotting the signs that your child may be in danger at their daycare or babysitter.
Be a secret shopper in at your child's facility
Your daycare should welcome visits at any time, with no prior warning. The way the personnel react to any unannounced visits should give you a hint about how welcome those visits are. You should attempt to visit without upsetting your child, so if your daycare has a window through which you can view them or other ways that would allow you to see them without causing a disruption that would be best. Increasingly, you can find ways to spy on the goings on with your phone connected to cameras inside the daycare. While having this much openness is encouraging, don't allow taking a peek at your smart phone to substitute for constant vigilance.
Watch for these signs of abuse at your daycare or babysitter
Be a close observer of your child's behavior so that you'll be aware of any changes. Children may show some of the following, and any of them should put you on the alert that something may be going on.
1. Your child seemed to have no trouble separating from you prior to now, but now clings to you and cries not to be left at the daycare.
2. Your child is faking sickness to keep from going to daycare.
3. There are new workers at the daycare that you are unfamiliar with.
4. Your child is acting strangely around certain workers, or afraid of certain certain workers.
5. Your child is acting differently, such as being moody, aggressive or irritable.
6. Your child has begun having nightmares, night terrors or is waking in the night more often.
7. Your child seems to be going backyard with some development milestones. For example, using baby talk, wetting their pants, thumb sucking, etc.
8. You are noticing unexplained bruises or marks on your child.
9. Your child has begun exhibiting unusual sexually mature behaviors.
Some of the above warning signs are just the usual skips and jumps associated with a growing child, but any of the above should prompt you toward closer investigation. Speak with your daycare provider, your pediatrician and a child therapist to learn more about spotting the signs that child is being abused. If you know that your child has been harmed at daycare, talk to a personal injury attorney right away and report it to the police. Money cannot make the effects of the abuse on your innocent child disappear, but those that harm children should pay the price, both civil and criminal.