FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 1, 2005
MAYOR MICHAEL R. BLOOMBERG SIGNS THREE PIECES OF LEGISLATION STRENGTHENING DAY CARE SYSTEM
Remarks by Mayor Bloomberg at a Public Hearing on Local Laws
"The three bills before me today are part of the City's ongoing efforts to reform the way we monitor day care providers. The impetus for these bills was the tragic death of Matthew Perilli. Matthew's parents deserve not only our sympathies, but also our thanks for their strength and for their determination that this never happens again. These bills help to improve the dissemination of information regarding child day care services in the City, so parents and caretakers can make informed decisions when choosing a day care service.
"The first bill, Introductory Number 473-A is sponsored by Council Members DeBlasio, Katz, Boyland, Palma, Reyna, Quinn, Brewer, Clarke, Comrie, Fidler, Foster, Gennaro, Gerson, Gonzalez, James, Jennings, Jr., Liu, Martinez, Nelson, Rivera, Seabrook, Stewart, Vann, Weprin, Recchia, Oddo, Lopez, Avella, Fidler, Sanders, Jackson, Speaker Miller and Public Advocate Betsy Gotbaum. Introductory 473-A requires that the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene make available to referral agencies, information regarding the termination of licenses, registrations or permits of child day care programs.
"This bill requires the Department of Health to request that referral agencies -- which include the Administration for Children's Services, the Human Resources Administration and any state-funded childcare resource and referral agency operating in New York City -- advise parents seeking information about child day care programs to consult the department's website or to call 311. Through these services parents can receive detailed information - including reports of disciplinary action - about City day care centers. The Department of Health will also be publishing an informational pamphlet in Arabic, Chinese, Haitian Creole, Korean, Russian, and Spanish that describes regulations relating to child day care programs, and to the inspection, registration, licensing and permitting processes of these programs.
"The next bill, Introductory Number 475-A, is sponsored by Council Members Katz, DeBlasio, Comrie, Foster, Avella, Boyland, Brewer, Clarke, Fidler, Gennaro, Gerson, Gonzalez, Jackson, James, Jennings, Jr., Koppell, Liu, Martinez, Nelson, Palma, Quinn, Recchia, Jr., Reed, Rivera, Sanders, Jr., Seabrook, Sears, Stewart, Vallone, Vann, Weprin, Lopez, Reyna, Felder, Oddo, Speaker Miller and the Public Advocate Betsy Gotbaum. This bill requires the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene to post a summary day care service inspection report for city-regulated Group Day Care facilities on its website and make the reports available by calling 311.
"Introductory Number 475-A would require Group Day Care providers to post a conspicuous sign stating the availability of such reports and how to access them. The summary inspection reports will include information regarding the day care facility and its permit status. This will allow parents and guardians to know if the facility's permit has been revoked or suspended in the past twelve months or whether the facility has been ordered closed due to dangerous conditions in the past three years, and any recent violations identified by the Health Department.
"This bill also requires an applicant for a permit or permit renewal, to disclose whether a serious injury or death of a child has occurred in the applicant's or an agent of the applicant's care. In addition, each applicant must disclose any civil or criminal court verdicts, administrative agency decisions, and any legal proceedings that hold the applicant or any agent of the applicant responsible for a serious injury or death of a child. Furthermore, the department is required to deny such permit unless the department is satisfied that the provisions of the New York City health code will be met. The department will also report any serious injury or death of a child in a day care service to the appropriate state agency.
"The last bill, Introductory Number 516-A is sponsored by Council Members DeBlasio, Boyland, Reyna, Baez, Barron, Brewer, Clarke, Comrie, Fidler, Foster, Gennaro, Gerson, Gonzalez, James, Jennings, Jr., Koppell, Liu, Martinez, Monserrate, Nelson, Palma, Reed, Vann, Weprin, Quinn, Seabrook, Lopez, Felder, Sanders, Jackson, Oddo, Speaker Miller and Public Advocate Betsy Gotbaum. This bill requires that the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene submit to the City Council, a quarterly report regarding child day care in New York City that includes information regarding the numbers and types of providers, inspections of day care centers, license, registration and permit applications and renewals, as well as revocations and suspensions. The department will publish this report and make it available on its website on an annual basis. I would like to thank Tom Frieden, the Commissioner of the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, Commissioner John Mattingly of the Administration for Children's Services, and Commissioner Verna Eggleston of the Human Resources Administration for their on-going efforts to ensure that the public has access to the necessary information needed for children to be placed in quality day care facilities. I would also like to thank the Council for their dedication and work on these pieces of legislation that will increase parents' abilities to access up-to-date information regarding childcare providers, and help ensure the safety of their children."
Edward Skyler / Jordan Barowitz (212) 788-2958
Watch bill signing in 56k or 300k