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Almost 90 Texas kids died and tons of had been sexually abused in day care, Statesman reviews

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Greater than 450 kids had been sexually abused and 88 others died of abuse and neglect in Texas day care services within the final decade, in line with an Austin-American Statesman investigation revealed Thursday. In the identical time interval, the newspaper discovered, 88 kids died of abuse and neglect.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott pledged to handle day care security in the course of the upcoming Legislative session.

“Governor Abbott’s prime precedence has at all times been the security of Texans, particularly in relation to our kids,” Abbott’s spokesperson, Ciara Matthews, instructed the Statesman. “Any allegation of kid abuse or neglect have to be taken critically, and the governor is not going to tolerate it in Texas. He’ll work with the Legislature and key stakeholders to establish methods and options to stop these tragedies from occurring sooner or later.”

A number of different state legislators contacted all through the investigation additionally instructed the Statesman that they’d be addressing points raised by the collection.

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The paper reported that Shawna Diaz, whose 3-month-old son died in a Houston day care in 2016, is working with state Rep. Ana Hernandez, D-Houston, on laws that may require cameras in all childcare services. However cameras generally is a controversial answer. Some mother and father are uncomfortable with the concept of different mother and father accessing a video feed of their youngster in a gaggle childcare facility. And a few childcare staff really feel that the fixed surveillance provides an pointless quantity of stress to their jobs.

State Sen. Judith Zaffirini, D-Laredo, plans to file a invoice just like the one which she and former state Rep. Linda Koop, R-Dallas, filed final session to mandate a statewide research that may assess whether or not Texas’ staff-to-child ratios in day care – a number of the highest within the nation – result in a extra harmful childcare setting.

“By offering essential knowledge concerning staff-to-child ratios and accidents at Texas day-care facilities, this invoice would enable us to make well-informed, evidence-based coverage selections,” Zaffirini instructed the Statesman. “Our youngsters are our most valuable useful resource and guaranteeing their security needs to be a prime precedence for the Legislature.”

However lots of the childcare facilities working in Texas are doing so below the radar, the Statesman reported. The Legislature accredited funding for a 30-person investigative unit of the Division of Household and Protecting Companies in 2013 to crack down on unlawful facilities, which have increased incidents of damage and neglect than these registered with the state. However the unit was disbanded after simply 4 years. The yr after the unit’s work was discontinued, the variety of unlawful childcare services that the state discovered dropped by almost half.

State Sen. Kirk Watson, D-Austin, instructed the Statesman that he’s working with company officers and the Senate Finance Committee, on which he sits, to re-establish the investigative unit.

The report recognized different potential options to the problems confronted by the day care business that haven’t but been taken up by lawmakers. David Brown, professor of early childhood training at Texas A&M College-Commerce, instructed the Statesman that he recommends all childcare services maintain legal responsibility insurance coverage, whatever the measurement of the operation. Extra than simply serving to mother and father cowl the prices related to incidents of damage or demise, Brown stated insurance coverage firms might demand stronger security precautions, like extra fencing or pet restrictions.

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