New Report Finds over 60 Virginia Children Have Died in Daycare Facilities Since 2004, Lack of Oversight Blamed

Earlier last month, a Washington Post article was released, summarizing the data that researchers had accrued regarding the safety of daycare facilities in the Commonwealth of Virginia and the safety of the facilities as a whole. The results were terrifying, showing that 60 young children have died while in the care of daycare providers in the last 10 years alone.

According to the report, the lack of regulation surrounding home-daycare facilities is at least partially to blame for the high number of deaths. In fact, approximately 43 of the 60 deaths over the past 10 years occurred at these virtually unregulated daycare facilities. Home-daycare facilities are not regulated by the Department of Social Services’ licensing division, which oversees all licensed facilities.

This means that the Department is not able to look into the kind or level of care that is being provided until there has been a complaint filed. Of course, at this point it is often too late to do anything. Virginia is one of only a few states that does not regulate home-daycare providers.

In the politically conservative state of Virginia, increasing government regulation over businesses is often met with hesitation. According to the report, that is exactly what is happening in Virginia regarding the regulation of home daycares. One woman interviewed by the Post stated, “I prefer for parents to oversee the care of their children, where possible, rather than increased government regulation.”
High Costs of Daycare Dictate Demand for Unregulated Care

If a parent desires to place their child in a regulated daycare facility, the cost can be around $300 per week. This comes out to over $15,000 a year. Thus, some families opt for cheaper care instead. The realities of the daycare business are such that it is unlikely that a cheaper provider will be licensed and subject to regulation. The result is that low-cost care is often unregulated.

Daycare Injuries

While there is nothing a parent can do to prevent an accident after it has occurred, it may provide some solace to know that they can at least hold the responsible party accountable for their actions in a court of law. The District of Columbia, as well as Maryland and Virginia, allows for parents to bring wrongful death lawsuits against negligent or abusive daycare providers. To learn more, contact a dedicated personal injury attorney.

Are You in Need of an Attorney?

If your child has been abused or neglected in a daycare facility, whether it is regulated or unregulated, you may be able to seek compensation for your child’s injury or your loss. The DC law firm of Lebowitz & Mzhen Personal Injury Lawyers has years of experience litigating all kinds of DC personal injury actions, including wrongful death actions. The dedicated lawyers at Lebowitz & Mzhen understand how difficult a time this can be for parents, and they do everything in their power to help as much as possible with the process. Click here, or call 410-654-3600 today to schedule a free initial consultation.

More Blog Posts:

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Staffer to US Senator Dies as a Result of a Hit and Run Accident, Washington DC Injury Lawyer Blog, June 26, 2014
Misplaced Construction Sign Results in $100,000 Settlement with St. Louis County, Washington DC Injury Lawyer Blog, August 21, 2014

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