By Steven Smith, Attorney and David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network
In New York and other states, day care operators, owners, and employees have a duty to report suspected abuse and neglect of children attending the day care program. Most states have statutes in place that require day care operators, teachers, counselors, doctors, and others to promptly report abuse and neglect. Why are such laws in place? It is simple – the laws are in place for the protection of children. A person like a day care operator does not have to witness the actual abuse or even be certain of the abuse. Most states require that the person reporting the abuse have a good faith belief or suspicion of abuse.
In Syracuse, New York, a day care provider is accused of failing to report signs of abuse to authorities. Diane Shakir, age 48, has been charged with the crime of failing to report suspected child abuse involving a child by the name of Imani Jennings. Just a few weeks before Imani was beaten to death by her mother’s boyfriend, Imani was at the day care center with visible injuries. Imani’s mother was criminally negligent homicide for failing to protect her child from the boyfriend’s beatings. Of course, the boyfriend has been charged with murder and that case will be tried in the future.
Ms. Shakir, who ran a day care center out of her home, should have reported the abuse and neglect. If the abuse and neglect was reported in a timely fashion, it is possible that a life could have been saved. Certainly Ms. Shakir’s responsibility for the death of this child does not even approach that of the mother and boyfriend; nevertheless, the safety and protection of the child should have been given more attention by this day care provider.
You can read more about this story at New York Day Care Operator to Stand Trial for Failing to Report Child Abuse.