Daycare refuses to care for my 8 yr old with Diabetes. Is this legal?

My son was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes 1 week ago.  I called my daycare and told them our situation and that I would stop by to speak with the Director/owner in person.  When I spoke to her, I explained what his daily routine would be.  I told her that, when summer begins, he would need an injection at lunch time along with routine blood gluc. checks.  I explained that I can bring a few staff members with me to the Diabetes 101 class offered by Childrens Medical Center.  It is a $1100 class, but my insurance would cover it 100% for each of them.  She said she was too busy and couldn't afford to lose 2-3 staff members for an ENTIRE day.  I've had both of my children in this daycare for 7-8 years.  I seriously though she would be more understanding and willing to go above and beyond for us.  Isn't that what people who care about do?  Shouldn't a director/owner have an outstanding love and devotion to children?  She also said the word disease about 5 times while he was sitting with me.  The word doesn't bother me personally, but don't keep repeating it when referring to my child.  He is 8 and understands most of what you are saying.  If I thought she was going to be so closed-minded and unprofessional than I wouldn't have brought him with me....  Then ,I could have questioned her "real love for children".  She is now saying that keeping him now for after school program will be a liability issue.  So I have no childcare now!!  I live in Forney, Texas and would like to speak to anyone who knows the facts about my rights in relation to Logan attending Daycare.  I found all types of information, but need to know Can a large private daycare refuse to give one insulin injection a day?  Here is some detailed info about them:  They do not accept government assistance.  They have another location in Frisco.   ???PLEASE HELP!!!

Berta Bryan

I'm sorry I don't know the answer to your question, hopefully someone on here will. But, have you contacted the American Diabetes Association (ADA)? They have legal assistance for people w/ D. The JDRF (who sponsors this site) will likely have advice if you call too.

You must be so angry, overwhelmed and disappointed! I'm so sorry you're going through this. It's the last thing you need in addition to a new T1 diagnosis!

Dear  Berta<,

My thoughts and prayers go out to you and your family.  My daughter jessarae was diagnosed at age 3, she is now 16.  As a mother of a child with diabetes I can understand all of the turmoil you are going through. It is a difficult time for you and your family, you need suport and understanding while you adjust and learn about diabetes and its role in your son, and familys life.  Although I am unfamiliar with the laws in your state, there are federal guidlines about discrimination of people with chronic illness, in regards to school, childcare and other areas.   Maybe you could look these up online in reference to your state.  I found a pamphlet at the endocrinology center for children where I took my daughter as a young girl, it was very beneficial to know and understand these laws.  Numerous times during her schooling I had to refer to it, educate staff and threaten to call my lawyer to maintain my daughters rights.  Sometimes it felt like a never ending battle, sometimes people can be misguided and appear cruel, don't give up!  There will be other children that will follow your son in school and you are paving the way for them as well, as I did for my daughter and other children who followed her in school.  As far as daycare goes, i understand you need daycare so you can maintain your employment.  But with what you know now- do you really want this woman taking care of your son?  Maybe look into afterschool programs, afterschool daycare provided at the school or at the local y, sometimes they will even bus the children to the y.  Is there a possibility of a neighbor, family friend or family member that you trust?  Is the school nurse aware of another child in your district that has diabetes?  Although she can not tell you who they are, you could ask her to give them your name and number.  You may be able to swap childcare with them, if not at least when you need an ear when your frustrated there will be someone to talk to who understands what your going through.  I understand your frustration when she continued to use the word disease in front of Logan, it will be important to remind people that he is "Logan" not the "diabetic kid"! He is still Logan, your son who happens to have diabetes a chronic illness that will be part of his day to day life for the remainder of his life.  I have found it is best not to hide Jessicas diabetes, but to yell it from the rooftops and educate anyone who cares to listen, the more people who know the more people who can look out for her when I am not around.  My e-mail is, if ever you need to talk to someone who understands I am here for you.  Take care and god bless.  Linda

Here are some resource that cover the American with Disabilities Act and the Amendment 2008 Act that now cover diabetics. 

If the daycare is receiving any federal or state funds to operate you may have some clout with this information.

I hope you can find a resource or the school can help.

Disability discrimination is illegal in the united states.

A private daycare (just like a private school) can admit or kick out any child they want.   Most daycares don't receive state or federal funding so don't have to accept everyone.    It's sad.   In theory, it is discrimination, but is it worth the time and money to get a lawyer and sue the provider?  And what will we sue for:  him to go there?  Do you really want your son at that center if that is how they treat people?    I would recommend giving the provider the benefit of the doubt or at least another shot at righting this wrong.

I would give talking to the provider another try, without your son, perhaps.   

Before going into the meeting, be sure to ask your son's endocrinology clinic if they have any written materials that you can give to the provider.   I would go in with the thought that this provider is scared and nervous something will happen.   You need to assure them that most days, nothing will happen especially with the great care you know they provide your children, but on the days that something does happen (it's going to happen - highs/lows/missed shot, etc.), you both agree to fixing the situation calmly and working together to reduce the possibility of that issue coming up again.    Just remember - they are scared out of their minds with this responsibility (just like you are).   It takes a team to raise a child with type 1 and you need them to be part of your team - try to ensure they know and understand this.

During this meeting, you can also discuss the words you do not want used around your son - i.e. he doesn't have a disease, he has diabetes  (or for us - we don't "test" blood sugars, we "check" them).   Think about this and just make a simple non-confronting effort to talk to her about this.  

Here are some good links you could send to the provider to help ease their mind and educate them:

  Understanding Diabetes by Dr. Peter Chase - 

  Basics on Diabetes from JDRF website:

You mention that daycare will have to give him his shot.  I'm sure this a absolutely terrifying for them.  I wonder if your son is on a pen (and maybe not call it a shot if he is (at least in front of them)) which will make administering insulin easier?   Maybe you said "shot" or "injection" and they are thinking huge needle they see on ER, or something.   And, I wonder if talking to his doctor about the possibility of getting him on an insulin pump before the end of school is possible.  Just explain that you and the daycare provider are not comfortable with them giving him injections, but pressing some buttons on a pump to give the insulin might work better.  

I hope this helps and you can work this situation out with his provider.   People do and say shocking things, hopefully this lapse in judgement will correct itself with some education.

I'm not sure if what the daycare did was legal or not,but I would look elsewhere for child care.  They do not seem to really care too much for children.  You seem better off finding another child care provider and I would spread the word about this daycare facility and their heartless director.



[quote user="Katie Clark"]

A private daycare (just like a private school) can admit or kick out any child they want.   Most daycares don't receive state or federal funding so don't have to accept everyone.


This is no longer true. I understand that you may no longer want your child in this daycare, however the original question was is this illegal? Yes it is.

ADA Title III: Public Accommodations

Title III covers businesses and nonprofit service providers that are public accommodations, privately operated entities offering certain types of courses and examinations, privately operated transportation, and commercial facilities. Public accommodations are private entities who own, lease, lease to, or operate facilities such as restaurants, retail stores, hotels, movie theaters, private schools, convention centers, doctors' offices, homeless shelters, transportation depots, zoos, funeral homes, day care centers, and recreation facilities including sports stadiums and fitness clubs. Transportation services provided by private entities are also covered by title III.

Public accommodations must comply with basic nondiscrimination requirements that prohibit exclusion, segregation, and unequal treatment. They also must comply with specific requirements related to architectural standards for new and altered buildings; reasonable modifications to policies, practices, and procedures; effective communication with people with hearing, vision, or speech disabilities; and other access requirements. Additionally, public accommodations must remove barriers in existing buildings where it is easy to do so without much difficulty or expense, given the public accommodation's resources.

Courses and examinations related to professional, educational, or trade-related applications, licensing, certifications, or credentialing must be provided in a place and manner accessible to people with disabilities, or alternative accessible arrangements must be offered.

Commercial facilities, such as factories and warehouses, must comply with the ADA's architectural standards for new construction and alterations.

Complaints of title III violations may be filed with the Department of Justice. In certain situations, cases may be referred to a mediation program sponsored by the Department. The Department is authorized to bring a lawsuit where there is a pattern or practice of discrimination in violation of title III, or where an act of discrimination raises an issue of general public importance. Title III may also be enforced through private lawsuits. It is not necessary to file a complaint with the Department of Justice (or any Federal agency), or to receive a "right-to-sue" letter, before going to court. For more information, contact:

U.S. Department of Justice
Civil Rights Division
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Disability Rights Section - NYAV
Washington, D.C. 20530

(800) 514-0301 (voice)
(800) 514-0383 (TTY)