Considering this is the second Florida day care center the twins have attended in less than 12 months, I really try to pick my battles when it comes to expressing concerns about their care. But, the strapping of children in high chairs for extended periods of time became aggravating, so I decided to call protective services who then referred me to the state licensing board. I approached the issue by asking if it is acceptable practice and the board considered this a very serious accusation and wanted to visit the center immediately. They did not observe any children strapped in wagons and chairs, but the center was warned that this should never happen to restrain children for the center’s convenience. I’m sure they know it was me who called, considering I asked them to stop some time ago. So, I decided to start shopping for another center just in case they started giving me the cold shoulder. However, they handled it professionally and things went on as normal.
Jordyn has been attending speech therapy regularly on Mondays at 8:15 and Wednesdays at 11:00. The Monday session flows nicely with the day care center’s schedule because it allows me to drop off the girls at their regular time. But the Wednesday session overlaps the lunch period of 11:30 to 12:15, so I always arrive by noon if not sooner. I also drop off Jaidyn earlier in consideration of not bringing both girls right before nap. But last week, I didn’t have enough time to take Jaidyn early, so she went to the session with us. We arrived at the center at noon and had an unusually longer wait for someone to answer the doorbell. Finally, the owner answers and stands in the doorway blocking our entrance as we spoke:
Owner: You bringing them here now?
Me: Yeah, Jordyn had speech therapy today, it’s Wednesday
Owner: The children have already been fed and are down for their nap
Me Well, the appointment doesn’t end until 11:30
Owner: Do you always bring them here at this time
Owner: Well the children are all fed and are down
I didn’t know what else to say. She was obviously not willing to let us in, so I simply walked away, deflated by the rejection. She turned us away as if it were the thing to do. Furious and wanting to know if this is allowable, I called, once again, my contact at the state licensing board. Her reaction to the issue encouraged me to remove my children from the center immediately and further action will be taken in the form of yet another formal complaint.
While speaking with the director of a different center, she used the term discrimination. And again with my friend I hear the word again, discrimination. I didn’t see how this awful term related to what happened, so I decided to look it up. Sure enough, that fat, lazy bitch violated our civil rights! When servicing a handicapped child, a provider is required by the Americans with Disability Act (“ADA”) to provide reasonable accommodations by softening their procedures. A couple of weeks ago, I found myself apologizing to the Monday speech therapist for rushing her feedback toward the end of the session, because if I didn’t make it to the center by 9:15 they would not feed the girls any breakfast. She gave me the strangest look and I felt weird saying it, but it was true. Needless to say, I have filed a formal complaint with the United States Department of Justice and have luckily found a related case awarding monetary penalties to the victim. I have every intention of pursing this to avoid this from happening to another disabled child who stumbles upon this horrible center. Stay tuned…