Parents 'nervous' about sending kids to daycare after Auckland tragedies

Michael Manjalloor says the incidents made him "very nervous".
SUPPLIED

Michael Manjalloor says the incidents made him "very nervous".

After two tragedies at Auckland daycare centres within 10 days, parents are questioning their children's safety.

Four-year-old Aldrich Viju died on a Takapuna daycare's playground on November 18. 

The details behind his death are still being investigated by WorkSafe NZ.

Ambulances outside Angels Childcare centre in Takapuna, Auckland, collecting the body of four-year-old Aldrich Viju.
FAIRFAX NZ

Ambulances outside Angels Childcare centre in Takapuna, Auckland, collecting the body of four-year-old Aldrich Viju.

Ten days earlier, four toddlers were struck by a falling tree at Discoveries daycare in Epsom. All were hospitalised and one boy suffered serious head injuries.

READ MORE:
Mourners spill out of church at prayer service for Aldrich Viju, the boy who died on a playground
* Young boy's death at Auckland playground 'devastates' Indian community
Four children injured by falling tree at Auckland daycare centre

Father-of-three Dr Michael Manjalloor said the incidents made him "very nervous" and that he wished more information about why they had happened had been released by officials.

Four-year-old Aldrich Viju died at Angels Childcare centre in a yet to be explained incident on the playground.
Supplied

Four-year-old Aldrich Viju died at Angels Childcare centre in a yet to be explained incident on the playground.

Manjalloor, a social worker who moved to Avondale from India eight years ago, belongs to the same Catholic community as Aldrich's family and has two children at Discoveries daycare.

He said his community, the Malayali Samajam, was "very concerned" for their children's safety at daycare in the incidents' aftermath because their "faith in the system has been damaged".

Most of the community arrived in New Zealand with young children and "can imagine all too vividly" what the bereaved family have been through, Manjalloor said.

Four toddlers were injured when this tree fell and struck them on a windy day at Discoveries Daycare in Epsom, Auckland.
CHRIS MCKEEN/FAIRFAX NZ

Four toddlers were injured when this tree fell and struck them on a windy day at Discoveries Daycare in Epsom, Auckland.

"We have all come to New Zealand only to get a better life to our little ones."

Ad Feedback

He believed the health and safety policies New Zealand childcare centres had in place were sound, but that there may be gaps between a policy and its application.

Malayali Samajam Incorporated group president Joseph Devasia said that many parents had approached him with fears about leaving their children at childcare centres.

"They are very nervous about what happened and think 'could my child die that way too?'" he said.

"It would have been better to have more transparency from the police ... When they say that there's been an accident in the play area - well, it could have been anything."​

Early Childhood Council chief executive Peter Reynolds said that while "frustration is completely natural", keeping things in perspective was crucial.

"There are more than 200,000 kids involved in early childcare every day and it's generally very safe," he said.

"Nevertheless, there is a frustrating lack of information about an event totally abhorrent and shocking for all involved - so of course there'll be speculation."

He said that he hoped the authorities in charge of investigating Aldrich's death would have results soon.

"Then the ECC will be helping childcare centres take all possible measures to make sure it doesn't happen again."

 ChildForum chief executive Dr Sarah Alexander said that it was rare for a child to die in early childhood education.

However, the number of serious accidents in recent years indicated a need for more regular checking by the Ministry of Education and the Education Review Office, she said.

 - Stuff

Ad Feedback
special offers
Auckland

Worker threatened with machete

The Z petrol station on Waiheke Island was robbed on Monday night.

The worker was alone at the time when a man entered the petrol station.

Battle over 'field of dreams' video

Panuku Development Takapuna's indicative plans show three buildings of up to nine-storeys on the current car park site.

Auckland Council's plan to sell prime land in Takapuna is angering some of the community.

The 'nerdiest housewarming ever'

Green leader James Shaw parties with, from left, policy networker Mark Harvey, Clive Fernandes, Marcus Atkinson and ...

That's what you call the personal touch: An Auckland couple invited candidates from the major parties to their housewarming - and they came.

Abortion and euthanasia – for or against?

Helensville candidates share their thoughts on abortion.

Three candidates running in Helensville are supportive of law changes for abortion and euthanasia, but two candidates have concerns.

Wellington

Sports fields a mudbath video

A particularly wet winter has left Grenada North Park almost unusable.

There are some sports fields at Wellington's Grenada North park where the ground is so soggy that children can barely run, let alone kick a ball.

Quarry's rocky ground

A digger working the existing pit at Kiwi Point quarry, Ngauranga Gorge.

Wellington's choice: a new scar on landscape, or running out of building material.

Emergency staffing shortage

The 4.4 magnitude earthquake at 11.58pm on Tuesday was widely felt in eastern Marlborough and the Wellington region

Wellington co-ordination centre could have a problem if there was a disaster tomorrow.

Candidates court rainbow vote

National's Nicola Willis addresses the crowd at a Rainbow Wellington candidates evening in St Andrew's on the Terrace on ...

Wellington candidates turn out to support LGBT issues - with one exception.

Canterbury

Trying to run 10km for charity video

An early first training run at Hagley Park on Tuesday. My palms are sweaty, knees weak, arms are heavy.

OPINION: I am not built for running. My legs are stumpy, feet pigeon-toed and I hate getting my hair sweaty.

Twizel man found dead

Missing Twizel man David Fountain has been found dead.

David Fountain, who died after his car crashed into a canal, has been remembered as an "honest, thoughtful" man.

Couple had 'no idea' of cost video

Tyler Stewart Stokes, 20, and Monique Carlaw, 22, earlier admitted lying to Talley's Fisheries about a car crash they ...

Couple created a bogus tale of a family tragedy to divert fishing trawler - costing Talley's $173k.

Council to take on red zone land

A refresh of the cost-sharing agreement between the Christchurch City Council and Goverment will transfer ownership of ...

Christchurch council will takeover ownership of the city playground and the bus interchange under new proposal with Govt.

Waikato

Burned in freak BBQ accident

Still smiling, Lalich is grateful for the quick actions of friends who immediately doused him in cold water and the ...

Skine Lalich was cooking a pork and lamb roast when the barbecue exploded, burning his face and arms. "It just went - boof."

10 slips in Hamilton

Most of the slips came to Hamilton City Council's attention after wild weather washed over in March and April, 2017 ...

Two of them 'could be from tens to hundreds of thousands of dollars to fix'.

Kinloch killing search 

A police guard stands out the front of a Whangamata Rd property in Kinloch after Scott John Henry was shot there in July.

Police struggle to find new information in murder investigation.

River crash victim dies

Rescuers extract the two people from the car towing a trailer that plunged into the Waikato River at Cambridge on ...

The 60-year-old had been pulled from a ute which disappeared beneath the surface of the Waikato River.

Taranaki

New disabled transport option

Suzanne Taylor and Dianne Grigg (front, right) from the new South Taranaki Passengers Services Society with  committee ...

They have customers aplenty and a van ready to go. Now all they need is money.

Compo win for renters

A landlord has been rapped over the knuckles by the Tenancy Tribunal for his tardiness in fixing a hole in  the bathroom ...

Their landlord ignored their complaints about their damp and dangerous home.

School gets lower speed limit

Stratford Primary School Principal Jason Elder and school patrol member Noah West-Adam, 12, were happy with the ...

Thirty per cent of cars driving past flouted the old limit.

Delays fire up broker

Ismail Can, owner of New Plymouth's Cafe Istanbul, watches from across the road as firefighters battle a blaze at his ...

Insurance broker wants police to clear his client of being involved in restaurant blaze.  

Manawatu

Wasting less, recycling more

Sam Battman is woking inside and outside the Palmerston North City Council building to make recycling easier for people.

Palmerston North recyclers given a boost. Just don't throw away that broken wine glass.

No-partner rule rare

Palmerston North Boys' High School year 12 student Zain Collins was not impressed at the no-date, no-ticket rule at his ...

Many Manawatu schools do not require students to take a partner to the formal ball.

Mum's pond house problems

Jillian Sinclair is struggling to find a house suitable for her special needs children, and fears she'll have to leave ...

She won a Tenancy Tribunal case against property manager, but still lives there.

Jets hopeful of green light

The Manawatu Jets are yet to hear whether their application to play in the NBL next year has been accepted.

The Manawatu Jets basketballers are still waiting to learn their fate.

Nelson

Aumua ready to impress

Tasman's Levi Aumua is tackled during their first round loss to Canterbury.

There's a real sense of anticipation surrounding Tasman's new signing Levi Aumua.

Social scammer guilty

It was too late to say sorry after Arapere sold tickets to a Justin Bieber show for $300 but never delivered them.

A Nelson man listed thousands of dollars worth of non-existent gig tickets and clothes for sale on Facebook.

Future of boat ramp in air

The boat launching ramp on Maori Pa Rd off Cable Bay Rd, which is used for boat access to Delaware Bay.

Nelson's boaties and council discuss findings of a report into vehicle impact at a popular boat launch site.

School friend's song for lost mate

Musician Jasper Hawkins wrote the song Letter to My Mother after the death of his school friend Ben Rose.

After his childhood friend died, Jasper Hawkins' song helped a grieving family heal.

Marlborough

Fresh approach?

Labour has printed another 5000 signs to replace the ones featuring former leader Andrew Little.

Come on Labour, let's do this. Campaign signs still selling the old "approach" in Marlborough.

Log spears family bach

The felled tree trunk pierces into the living room.

Family demands answers after felled tree destroys Marlborough Sounds bach.

Missing man likely dead

Marlborough Sounds man William Kerry Blair disappeared in March 2014. (File photo)

But how Kerry Blair died in the Marlborough Sounds still remains a mystery.

Food cart back in business

Food truck owner Karen Gonzalez, left, serves Priyanthi Bojaraj in November before she was forced to close her business ...

NZTA put $10,000 towards making the lay-by safer for drivers pulling over.

South Canterbury

Twizel man found dead

Missing Twizel man David Fountain has been found dead.

David Fountain, who died after his car crashed into a canal, has been remembered as an "honest, thoughtful" man.

'Violence and cruelty'

The tails of an unknown number of cows were broken by a Temuka farmer, who didn't obtain any medical help to treat their ...

Farmer broke tails of cows, punched them, and struck them with a pipe, court hears.

Timaru girl in redhead project

Danni Mitchell-Saunders, 4, has been included in a project celebrating redheads.

A Timaru 4-year-old's red hair has been included in a national photography project.

Food course launched

The new food processing course would begin at Ara Institute of Canterbury next year.

New qualification to prepare students for life in the food processing sector launched.

Otago

Milton burial project 'a work in progress'

A coffin handle from the St John's Burial Ground exhumation project.

Milton burial bones yet to reveal pioneers' life and death stories.

Penguin protest criticised

South Otago Forest & Bird members taking to Balclutha's main street, to highlight the crisis facing coastal Otago's ...

Marine reserves are not the answer to saving the yellow-eyed penguin, a fisherman claims.

Clutha District Council tops debt-free list in Otago

Clutha District Council mayor Bryan Cadogan.

Debt-free Clutha District Council highlighted in national ratepayers' report.

'Conundrum' for Manuherikia River users

Central Otago Mayor Tim Cadogan at the "civil conversation" meeting about the Manuherikia River.

Ecological river health verses economic need - a panel of Central Otago community members faced-off in an effort to find a solution.

Southland

Polyfest hits new heights video

Members of the Otatara Kindy on stage at Polyfest 2017

''They like the sense of whanau, they feel like they are a part of something."

Hospitality at the heart of the south

Ronald McDonald Family Room supervisor Helen Walker and volunteer Susan Stenton at the Ronald McDonald House ...

Southland's inaugural Purple Work Shirt Day is raising funds for Ronald McDonald House.

'Stubbornness' gets Grieve home

Dwight Grieve from Fiordland leads Jack McNaughton and Buddy Small in the early stages of the Southland championships in ...

Stubbornness and a want to succeed have helped Dwight Grieve claim the Southland Road Championship title in Te Anau on Saturday.

Quick thinking prevents injury

Fire crews attend a house fire on Dipton street, Invercargill, on Sunday afternoon.

An Invercargill family had a close shave following a house fire in Kingswell.

Ad Feedback