Shawnee County crack down on summer camp health inspections

TOPEKA (KSNT) — Kids are taking advantage of their free days of summer by having a ball at summer camp.

Most of these camps have one goal in mind.

”We just want to keep the kids busy and entertained for the summer and a safe place to be,” said Darlene Streeter, summer camp director.

To crack down on unsafe child care services, child care licensing inspectors check out all the area’s summer camps and child care centers.

“We conduct an unannounced inspection majority of the time,” said Jennifer Zimmerman, licensing inspector for the Shawnee County Health Agency.

When inspectors stop by your kiddo’s day care or summer camp, the children’s safety is always top priority.

“We look at staff training, CPR and first aid,” said Zimmerman.

The county is also on the lookout for unlicensed facilities. In 2013, 5-month-old Caleb Stewart died while in the care of an unlicensed Topeka home-caregiver.

“They need to be licensed and it is important that they do that,” says Misty Kruger with the Shawnee County Health Agency. “It is actually against the law for them to run a day care without being licensed.”

If they find an unlicensed operation, the owners face a hefty fine. And if you run an unsafe one, you also face fines and suspension or revocation of your license.

But for the most part, licensed operators work well with inspectors.

“Assures parents that they have reliable day care,” says Streeter.

And your kids can have “fun in the sun.”


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