2014 begins intense background checks for child care workers - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

2014 begins intense background checks for child care workers

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ALBANY, GA (WALB) -

A new law mandating stricter fingerprint checks for all childcare workers in now in effect.

Parents with young children say they can now send them to daycare and feel at ease about who takes care of their children.

In November, a child was accidentally left alone inside when an Albany daycare center closed. The owner and a worker, Glenda Spence and Virginia Thrower were arrested.

The new daycare law is designed to protect children in daycares.

"I think it's great, every precaution should be taken. No one will love them like you will, So whenever they are away from them you should take extra precaution," said Katie Locke, who is the parent of 10-month daughter.

Starting Wednesday, anyone wanting to work in a licensed childcare facility must have a federal fingerprint background check. Lesley Wells takes her son Luckie to daycare and says she wants to make sure her child is safe.

"I think everybody needs that scrunity," said Wells. "Everybody wants someone to take better care of their kids. I think it's a great law."

Before, only daycare center directors had to undergo federal background checks while other employees had to pass a state check that didn't reveal crimes committed in other states.

Wells is a former daycare worker, and says she's grateful for the new stricter law.

"The first thing I had to do was go to the prison and get finger printed. I think its a great step," said Wells.

While Locke thinks the new law is great, she doesn't plan to send her 10 month old daughter to daycare anytime soon.

"I actually worked in daycares and I know how things are run and I would just rather keep her at home with me and enjoy and make all the memories," said Locke.

All of Georgia's neighboring states are already using fingerprint background checks for daycare employees.

A new background check must be performed every 5 years for workers.

Existing employees of childcare centers have until 2017 before they are required to have the deeper fingerprint background check.

 

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