State: Day care suspended after worker touched children with thumbtack

Mark Hicks
The Detroit News
ABC Early Learning Center

State officials have suspended a Southfield day care's license amid allegations that a worker inappropriately touched children with push pins.

The Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs recently investigated complaints against ABC Early Learning Center, operated by Brown Investment Group, and learned that a staff member "harmed two different children by hiding a thumbtack between their fingers and making physical contact with the children," the agency said Monday.

The probe found that day care operators failed to report the incidents last year to LARA and initially lied to a consultant about one of the contacts, which "involved the employee hugging a child while placing a palm on the child’s back to press the thumbtack into the child’s shoulder," investigators allege. 

A co-worker had video evidence of the latter incident, but a supervisor said she lied in an interview because she didn't believe the accused staffer had acted maliciously, LARA reported.

The licensee also failed to report the behavior to parents or Children’s Protective Services, the state and Children's Protective Services said.

The summary suspension order entered last week prohibits Brown Investment Group from operating a child care center or accepting children. The case is pending with the Michigan Administrative Hearing System.

Officials with the day care, which can appeal the suspension, did not immediately respond to a request for comment Monday night.