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Old 02-11-2017, 12:41 AM
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Default New Virginia Child Care Laws

Is there anyone in Virginia that may have some insight on the new child care laws in Virginia specifically the one known as "Joseph's law". In Virginia it is Legal to have an unlicensed daycare/ family day home if you only provide care for 4 children or less.(Just recently changed from 5 children or less) Every article that I read states things like this new law is "sending a strong message to unlicensed providers" and "encourage compliance" and "Cracking down on" implying that all unlicensed daycares (not just illegally operating unlicensed daycares) are unsafe or illegal even if they are legally operating. Seems they are grouping all legal and illegal unlicensed providers together. I don't see anywhere where they specify if it applys to legal or illegal unlicensed providers or both. I don't see how some of the statements could apply to both when it is Legal to be unlicensed.

Here are just a few links

http://wric.com/2016/03/09/josephs-l...jured-or-dies/

"The legislation will increase the penalty applied when a daycare operator willfully chooses to violate the law by not obtaining a license and then has a child die or become severely injured in the unlicensed daycare."

Does this mean that you are violating the law by willfully choosing to not get licensed? But how can that be true if it is Legal to be unlicensed in Virginia?

Or does this mean that you are only violating the law if something happens to a child while in your care in an unlicensed daycare? No matter if the daycare is legally or illegally unlicensed.

http://wsls.com/2016/04/08/josephs-l...nsed-daycares/


It seems the implications are toward all unlicensed providers.

The law Joseph's law is to increase the penalty to "unlicensed providers" in the case of serious injury or death of a child while in care. And was brought about because of an incident of the tragic death of a young boy in a house fire at an illegal unlicensed daycare. Even though unlicensed daycare is legal in Virginia she had 8 children in her care 6 of which were under the age of 2, making the daycare illegal because she surpassed the limit of the then 5 total children.

Do the penalties from this new Josephs law apply to only illegal unlicensed family day homes? How about legally unlicensed family day homes? How about legally licensed family day homes? Or illegal unlicensed child day centers? Or licensed child day centers? Is there a separate penalty for licensed/legally unlicensed/illegally unlicensed and family day homes/child day centers?

The only thing I can find that is different between a legal unlicensed daycare and an illegal unlicensed daycare is not complying with the 4 children or less limit. Is this the only difference? Or are there others?

Also what is the penalty just for operating an illegal family day home (without a report of serious injury or death)?
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Old 02-11-2017, 01:37 PM
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I see this as a way to encourage people to become licensed by increasing fines for unlicensed providers. It is not illegal to be unlicensed but it is frowned upon and they don't like it! Illegally unlicensed means you are breaking the law and can go to jail. Legally unlicensed means you follow regulations like no more than 4 kids.

They do similar things here in Canada or at least in my province. It is legal to be unlicensed. They offer ZERO incentive to become licensed but then they lump you in with this idea that you are "dregs of the earth" because you are unlicensed. For example I have to get my parents to sign a waiver that states they are signing their child up in an unlicensed home childcare setting and I need to keep this on file for 5 yrs in case I get audited by the ministry. They also do not permit therapists to come into my home to offer therapy to children with special needs. I cannot fill out a form for a child entering kindergarten because I am unlicensed. Eventhough I am personally a registered ECE (registered with a governing body) because I am unlicensed I am treated the same as anybody operating a daycare. I still follow the Early Years Act which states no more than 5 kids inclusing my own and they have to be certain ages.

Meanwhile unlicensed home providers account for about 80% of childcare in my City!
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Old 02-11-2017, 01:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ariana View Post
I see this as a way to encourage people to become licensed by increasing fines for unlicensed providers. It is not illegal to be unlicensed but it is frowned upon and they don't like it! Illegally unlicensed means you are breaking the law and can go to jail. Legally unlicensed means you follow regulations like no more than 4 kids.

They do similar things here in Canada or at least in my province. It is legal to be unlicensed. They offer ZERO incentive to become licensed but then they lump you in with this idea that you are "dregs of the earth" because you are unlicensed. For example I have to get my parents to sign a waiver that states they are signing their child up in an unlicensed home childcare setting and I need to keep this on file for 5 yrs in case I get audited by the ministry. They also do not permit therapists to come into my home to offer therapy to children with special needs. I cannot fill out a form for a child entering kindergarten because I am unlicensed. Eventhough I am personally a registered ECE (registered with a governing body) because I am unlicensed I am treated the same as anybody operating a daycare. I still follow the Early Years Act which states no more than 5 kids inclusing my own and they have to be certain ages.

Meanwhile unlicensed home providers account for about 80% of childcare in my City!
I agree that at least 80 percent of home child care providers in my state are unlicensed as well....and at least 50 percent of those operate illegally. When QRIS began in 2001 there were over 3000 family providers and today there are 644.......and the state thinks they did a good thing when in fact all those that QUIT went underground and many children are in non-monitored homes. In my state, license exempt allows providers to care for four non-related children and innumerable amount of related chidlren but my food program lady tells me she has 42 providers in 3 counties and only 8 are licensed....and the unlicensed providers count all their children as related so they can keep as many as me....makes me
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Old 02-11-2017, 02:09 PM
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I think the penalty is because the person had more than the allotted children.Way over the limit for both legal and illegal.I think the government wants to penalize for that.To many children were on site and not able to be saved in the emergency.
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Old 02-11-2017, 02:38 PM
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You can be legally unlicensed in Virginia and the way I understood the law was that if a serious injury or death occurs in your care and they can prove you were neglectful ( too many kids etc ) then you can be charged with a felony. This applies to everyone who operates any form of daycare in the state. The provider who was watching baby Joseph had a child die in her care years before and was only charged with a misdemeanor and allowed to reopen and she operated illegally again and Joseph died.

I find the media likes to lump legally unlicensed and illegal providers in the same group unfortunately.
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Old 02-12-2017, 02:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Annalee View Post
I agree that at least 80 percent of home child care providers in my state are unlicensed as well....and at least 50 percent of those operate illegally. When QRIS began in 2001 there were over 3000 family providers and today there are 644.......and the state thinks they did a good thing when in fact all those that QUIT went underground and many children are in non-monitored homes. In my state, license exempt allows providers to care for four non-related children and innumerable amount of related children but my food program lady tells me she has 42 providers in 3 counties and only 8 are licensed....and the unlicensed providers count all their children as related so they can keep as many as me....makes me
I have found that here in my area of TN also; Blount Co only has 1-2 licensed homes literally... some unlicensed still advertise they take no more than 5-6 kids (not counting their own) but we can only take 4; because I am under 2's only, I can't take more than 4 even if I was fully licensed & that's what I tell parents when they interview with me. I also explain on my website what TN law is for legally license exempt. The fact I do keep low #'s is why I get better clients

I am what used to be considered, a registered provider in TN, but it's because I jumped extra hoops to take foster kids & subsidy when I first opened here, now they dropped the term.You are either license exempt or licensed, but some people still push #'s illegally & it hurts everyone... where I live Blount Co also has to give the OK for you to be considered a licensed home/small business before the state will do their thing. I am not about to risk my house being booted off a rented lot because I don't follow the rules
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Old 02-12-2017, 11:39 AM
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Ariana Ariana is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Annalee View Post
I agree that at least 80 percent of home child care providers in my state are unlicensed as well....and at least 50 percent of those operate illegally. When QRIS began in 2001 there were over 3000 family providers and today there are 644.......and the state thinks they did a good thing when in fact all those that QUIT went underground and many children are in non-monitored homes. In my state, license exempt allows providers to care for four non-related children and innumerable amount of related chidlren but my food program lady tells me she has 42 providers in 3 counties and only 8 are licensed....and the unlicensed providers count all their children as related so they can keep as many as me....makes me
I see lots of providers with more children than they should have for sure! No one is monitoring it. They just don't have the money to pay for inspections so they do a real bad PR campain hoping to get parents to stop putting their kids with unlicensed providers. The thing is, parents don't care!

The regulations here were 5 unrelated kids, now it is 5 kids total including your own. Also only 2 kids under two years are allowed. They recentky said that if you become licensed you can have 6 kids so a bit of an incentive. Also as an ECE I can receibe a top up in my daily earnings...but it just isn't worth it! A ton of people closed their doors and many parents were left without childcare. It is EXTREMELY hard to find infant care in my city. Centres don't offer it until kids are 18 months and that leaves homecare providers who are restricted by numbers. Many providers have started charging extra for infants just to make up the difference in lost income.
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Old 02-12-2017, 12:06 PM
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Annalee Annalee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ariana View Post
I see lots of providers with more children than they should have for sure! No one is monitoring it. They just don't have the money to pay for inspections so they do a real bad PR campain hoping to get parents to stop putting their kids with unlicensed providers. The thing is, parents don't care!

The regulations here were 5 unrelated kids, now it is 5 kids total including your own. Also only 2 kids under two years are allowed. They recentky said that if you become licensed you can have 6 kids so a bit of an incentive. Also as an ECE I can receibe a top up in my daily earnings...but it just isn't worth it! A ton of people closed their doors and many parents were left without childcare. It is EXTREMELY hard to find infant care in my city. Centres don't offer it until kids are 18 months and that leaves homecare providers who are restricted by numbers. Many providers have started charging extra for infants just to make up the difference in lost income.
I felt our state was doing fine with state licensing but now QRIS Assessments annually cost the state millions..and this has been going on for 15 years....so I feel if QRIS assessment became voluntary or diminished altogether, unlicensed providers would become licensed again and the state would benefit with monetary gain, but what do I know.....no one seems to want to listen to what I have to say!
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