NEW YORK CITY (WABC) --Mayor Bill de Blasio and Health Commissioner Dr. Mary Bassett on Friday announced an initiative that will require all 2,300 child care centers permitted by New York City to prominently post a Child Care Performance Summary Card near its entrance.
The performance card is the result of a year-long negotiation with State Senator Jeff Klein, who had launched a series of investigations on day care safety. The health department will immediately begin taking action to fully implement the program by summer of 2017.
"Providing parents with up-to-date, easily accessible information about the safety of the city's childcare centers has been a priority for my administration," de Blasio said. "That is why last year, we announced Child Care Connect, a website featuring an email and text notification system alerting parents of a child care center's latest inspections."
The cards, which include key indicators, such as the number of children allowed in care, the number of times the program has been suspended and the number of Health Code violations issued compared to the citywide average, will help parents and other caregivers make informed decisions about which child care center to choose for their children.
"The Child Care Performance Summary Card is our latest effort to ensure that parents get information that is not only readily accessible, but also easy to understand," de Blasio said. "We are confident the performance card will be a useful tool for New York City parents."
The health department anticipates this initiative will lead to improved performance in child care centers across the city. The agency's experience in posting performance cards at restaurants has shown that businesses are more likely to adhere to health and safety standards when they know that customers have easy access to inspection results. The health department is confident that the Child Care Performance Card will become an incentive to child care centers to excel in the level of service they provide to the City's children.
While the Health Department will implement this initiative for all 2,300 child care centers, Klein and Assembly Member Michele Titus will codify the city initiative into state law.
The requirement would not apply to family-based child care sites, which are licensed by New York State. The performance card would be updated by the Health Department after every inspection, or at least once a year. Caregivers who have questions about the information on the cards will be encouraged to visit NYC Child Care Connect or call 311.