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Dog Grooming Still More Regulated Than Child Care in ID

April 2, 2007

Boise, ID - Idaho kids still don't rank higher than dogs when it comes to state oversight of the child care industry. Dog groomers face more requirements and oversight than child care providers. Legislators went home without setting basic health and safety requirements for licensing, and some legislators say they'll try again next session, especially after Idaho was ranked worst in the nation for child care oversight. Karen Mason with the Idaho Association for the Education of Young Children says licensing is common for many professions and services.

"Other people are licensed, such as contractors, hair dressers, dog groomers, and people who do services for adults."

Idaho was ranked last in the nation for child care oversight the day after legislators rejected criminal background checks and other safety requirements. Those against child care standards say it could be tough on small child care businesses, and some want children to stay at home with their mothers instead of going to child care.

Mason believes the lack of criminal background checks should be especially scary for parents.

"At this moment, anyone can walk out of prison, for whatever reason, and care for up to six kids. Most parents don't know that there's not child care licensing."

Deborah Smith/Eric Mack, Public News Service - ID