Ross River daycare closed without explanation

People in Ross River are puzzled as to why the community's only daycare has been closed since last month.

Families seek explanation after doors remain locked for weeks

The Little Rascals daycare facility is in the Ross River recreation centre. (Government of Yukon)

Families in Ross River, Yukon, want to know why the community's daycare has been closed for at least a month.  

"There's no one there. It's suddenly closed for no reason," said resident Lonnie Jeffries.

Kim Redies, a grandmother, said people are scrambling to make alternative arrangements. She said lately, relatives have been taking care of her 11-month-old granddaughter while the girl's mother goes to work. 

"It's been really inconvenient, especially not knowing. I think if we knew if it's definitely shut down, or when it was going to open, that would help us make some better plans," Redies said. 

"I know a couple of parents that are putting on Facebook they need help, they need a babysitter," she said. 

Parents were also caught off guard in August, when the daycare closed for the month without warning.

Funding could be at risk

The Little Rascals daycare, licensed in 1997, is the only one in Ross River. It's a private enterprise but uses space in the community's recreation building which is managed by the territorial government.

In an email to CBC on Tuesday, Michelle Boleen of Yukon Health and Social Services said a prolonged closure could prompt the territorial government to cut funding. 

"Funding is only provided to programs that are in operation. The daycare would not be eligible for Direct Operating Grant or Child Care Subsidy for the period they are closed and not providing a service," Boleen wrote. 

The daycare's phone appears to be disconnected. CBC is still trying to reach members of the board and the daycare's executive director.


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