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Old 12-30-2009, 03:17 PM
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Crystal Crystal is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2009
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Hi everyone! My name is Crystal. I realize I am new here, and I do not mean to offend anyone, but I'd like to share a story, that explains why I consider a license to be pertinent.

When I opened my program 13 years ago, I went through the licensing process. I knew a lady down the street from my home who, at the same time, chose to operate an unlicensed program, which is against regs here in Ca. unless care is only for one family. I chose to mind my own business, I knew her, she seemed like a fine person, as did her (what I thought was) husband, who did some volunteer work for the elementary school that my children were attending. I did lose out on a couple of potential clients, who decided that cheaper was the way to go, but I figure those parents were only thinking about the bottom line, so I probably didn't want them as clients anyway. She ran her business there for about three years, until one day I noticed helicopters flying overhead. This woman, who I never had an issue with, who seemed to be doing all the right things, had alot to hide, hence the reason for not being licensed. The man living in her home had been molesting her daughter (with Mom's knowledge) and had been molesting two three year olds attending her program for some time. He also had several prior felony convictions for drugs and assault charges and the provider herself had done jail time for other offenses. The man is now serving 25 years to life and she did time as well for not preventing it from happening.

I have kicked myself for years over not reporting her unlicensed program to licensing. I COULD have prevented children from being molested, but I chose to "look the other way" because her unlicensed program was "none of my business". In some regard, I have always felt responsible for what occurred in that home.

That being said, of course there are many, many unlicensed programs that go above and beyond. But without that background check, how do we TRULY know that the people operating these programs are who they say they are? Is it a gut instinct that parents should have about the person they are interviewing?

I will NEVER look the other way again. If I EVER come across an unlicensed program, it will immediately be reported, regardless of how clean their home is, how nice they seem to be, or whether or not I "see" any violations other than not having a license. As they say "never judge a book by it's cover" and I think that applies here.
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