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New bill will regulate church-run daycare centers

February 12, 2004
By: Lindsay Shively
State Capital Bureau

Church-run daycare centers would come under stronger state regulation under a bill unveiled by three St. Louis area lawmakers Thursday.

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This measure is sponsored in the Senate by Democrat from St. Louis County, Rita Days. She argues there is no reason to treat relgious child centers differently.

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Contents: Sen. Rita Days says it makes no sense to exempt some daycare centers from state regulation, but not others.

Supporters of the bill are calling the current exemption for religous home daycares unfair.

But supporters of the exemption have argued that state regulation of religious centers would violate the principle of separation of church and state.

Date:02/12/04

By: Lindsay Shively

State Capital Bureau

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Three St. Louis lawmakers are pushing a bill that would require religious home daycares to obtain a license to operate. They are now exempt from this license that other day cares need because they are residential and faith-based.

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Supporters assure that the bill regulating church-run home daycares will not be an attempt to shut them down but to raise safety standards for Missouri's children. St. Louis Sen. Pat Daugherty stresses that this is not an attack on those institutions.

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Contents: This isn't an attack on home daycares.

Daugherty also said many religous daycares have already voluntarily been licensed. Those opposed to the bill worry that it may violate the principle of church and state.