Former employees say kids drugged at church daycare

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POSTED: Thursday, July 11, 2013 - 3:05pm

UPDATED: Thursday, July 11, 2013 - 3:08pm

Former employees accuse church day care workers of drugging a three-year-old.

Former employees of a church day care complain that teachers flicked kids in the face and drugged a 3-year-old so the child would sleep.

The accusations against kidstreet day care are revealed in a report from the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services..

"When you send your child to school and you go off to work you have to know and think that they're in a safe protected loving environment and when they're not, it's gut wrenching."

Wimer says it's her daughter mentioned in this report from the Department of Health and Senior Services.

She took her daughter to a daycare at Twin Rivers Worship Center on Tesson Ferry Road. Two caregivers told inspectors the 4-year-old was put 'alone and in the dark.'

Wimer spoke directly to a teacher who said she watched it.

"Come to find out they had literally stripped her of everything. They put her in this dark room during naptime, most of the time because she was coughing and other times just because it seemed like it was a punishment for her."

Inspectors also document that three caregivers described seeing the director and her assistant 'flick children in the face as discipline.'

One caregiver reported the assistant director gave 'Benadryl... To a 3-year-old child to get the child to sleep.' wimer`s attorney fears what happens next.

"This is where kids are supposed to learn nurturing or trust, and when something like this happens to a little developing mind and personality, the possibilities of what could happen down the road are numbing."

"The Twin Rivers Worship Center wrote this response to the state saying the accused daycare director and assistant director no longer work for Kidstreet. The church says it has now trained all employees on proper discipline and supervision and the church says it removed all medications from the site and will only dispense those parents bring in themselves. Typically, regulators might follow up and act on a license but because this is a church regulators are limited and they have no say in how a church daycare disciplines."

Missouri State Rep Jeremy Lefaver, who`s from Kansas City, has tried to eliminate the church child care license exemption.

"We require everybody who cuts hair and paints toenails to carry a license, but not people who care for our kids, I think that's a significant discrepancy in the law and I'm setting out to fix it."

He plans to push a bill every year he's in office. His effort failed last year.

"One of the main opponents this year said the main reason we're opposed to it is because license requirements say you're not allowed to hit kids with pieces of wood, or what they refer to as paddling."

The church daycare Kidstreet, however, has a policy that says 'WE DO NOT: Spank, shake, bite, pinch, push, pull, slap or otherwise physically punish the children.'

That gave regulators a creative opening to cite the daycare for making 'false statements...' The state also used a state health and safety law to cite Kidstreet for 'noncompliance... Concerning administration of medication.'

But since Kidstreet is license exempted regulators don't have the same leverage

Kidstreet sent a letter to parents saying the cay care has implemented changes in terms of how it distributes medication.

The letter also states the day care is "committed to the well-being of all children" in its care.

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