Tips for Screening Caregivers

Check the background Of a potential caregiver through enforcement. Always ask for and check references.

Ask the person if he or she has ever identified an abused child and gauge their reaction to See if they would minimize or juctify abusive behaviors. Ask the person if he or she has ever been accused Of abusing a child and again gauge their reaction.

Be clear with a potential caregiver about your family rules for safety including physical boundaries, personal and physical care, and discipline. Let them know you are vigilant with regards to safety and that your child knows the safety rules.

Let child care providers know that you may make unscheduled Visits, and then follow through.

Keep a list of screened babysitters before you need them, so you aren’t rushed to use someone you don’t know well.

Be Wary of someone who is over eager to watch your kids, like offering to babysit for free or offers to babysit just to “give you a break.”

Bathe and get your child ready for bed before you leave.

Watch for “grooming behavior” which might include physical horseplay, tickling, kissing, hugging, massaging, and invading child’s space or privacy.

Set boundaries with simple things like candy or TV time and consider it a red flag if a babysitter doesn’t respect these boundaries.

Watch and listen to your child; observe before, during and after time with a caregiver; look for any changes in behavior.

Source: Darkness to Light

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