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Daycare owner says COVID-19 regulations make it almost impossible to run her business

Last Updated Oct 8, 2020 at 9:00 pm EDT

A Mississauga private daycare owner says the COVID-19 regulations for child care centres are making it almost impossible to run her business. Erika Fletcher

A Mississauga private daycare owner says even though the Ontario government recently revised its child care centre screening guidelines, the COVID-19 regulations are making it tough to run her business.

Jackie Sheppard, the owner of Streetsville Children’s Centre and Streetsville Academy, says she has re-opened with fewer kids, greater staffing costs and COVID-19 restrictions from Peel Public Health that are almost impossible to work with; in particular, the rules about symptoms and sending kids with home with runny noses.

“I mean, what baby who’s teething does not have a runny nose? We are sending child after child after child and parents are getting very frustrated,” Sheppard shared with 680 NEWS.

She says she wants the symptom list revisited and soon.

Dr. Lawrence Loh, Peel’s Medical Officer of Health, says Public Health gets its guidelines and protocol from other officials, such as the Ministry of Health.

“The test behind these guidelines is to protect people from the risk of COVID-19 and to ultimately reduce the spread,” Loh said.

“That’s why they start out necessarily conservative but they’re always revisited.”

Sheppard, meanwhile, says what she would like to see is someone from Peel Public Health to come out to her daycare and help her manage and better understand how to work with the restrictions.

According to the Medical Officer of Health, daycare owners can get advice or information about the COVID-19 guidelines on Peel’s website or by calling Peel’s info line.