A child care center in northern Delaware and adjacent areas of Maryland agreed to pay a $27,500 fine.
The U.S. Justice Department entered a settlement agreement to resolve allegations that two child care providers violated the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) by failing to reasonably modify its program to accommodate the needs of young children with Type 1 (juvenile) diabetes and barring them from the facility.
One agreement is with Lil’ Einstein’s Learning Academy, which operates child care facilities in Bear and Newark, and Chesapeake City and Elkton, MD. The second agreement is with a one location center in northern California.
“Given the critical role that dependable child care plays in a parent’s ability to work or go to school, we are proud that this settlement will ease the struggle to find quality child care for families of children with disabilities,” said United States Attorney David C. Weiss for the District of Delaware.
The complaint alleged that a 16-month old child, who had been enrolled in the program since she was six months old, was disenrolled on the basis of her disability.
Upon their daughter’s diagnosis with Type 1 diabetes, the child’s parents requested that Lil’ Einstein’s Learning Academy staff provide routine diabetes care, including supervision of her continuous glucose monitor (CGM) and insulin administration through her insulin pump. The complaint further alleged that Lil’ Einstein’s Learning Academy refused to administer insulin to their daughter through the pump, refused to permit their daughter’s personal, licensed nurse to accompany her at the daycare to provide the needed diabetes care, and disenrolled their daughter on the basis of her disability.
In each case, the parents had to secure new child care settings for their children, resulting in stress for both sets of parents, who depended upon the providers to properly care for their children while they worked to support their families, a release stated.
Under the agreements, Lil’ Einstein’s Learning Academy agreed to pay $25,000 in compensatory damages to the aggrieved child and her parents and $2,500 in civil penalties. Both the California and Delaware-area child care centers also agreed to evaluate each request for reasonable modifications on an individualized basis.