Mums harming kids through daycare – report

NZ Herald 8 Feb 2012
A controversial psychologist has been criticised for a new report that says New Zealand mothers could be harming their children by sending them to daycare. The report Who Cares? Mothers, Daycare and Child Wellbeing in New Zealand – commissioned by Family First New Zealand and prepared by British psychologist Aric Sigman – looks at the potential impacts of separating a child from their parent in the first few years of life. The 30-page report, which drew on previously published research from around the world, said attending daycare, and the subsequent separation from parents, was a significant source of stress for many children. It said 70 to 80 per cent of children in centre-based daycare had increasing levels of the stress hormone cortisol, which could be harmful to the child’s immune system. The author has been criticised in the past for ignoring inconvenient evidence, cherry-picking research and relying on outdated studies. Family First national director Bob McCoskrie said the report was compiled to put a new set of facts on the table. “[In the past] it’s all been about getting mothers back to work and the benefits of daycare in terms of outcomes, but there’s been no corresponding weight given to some of the research that’s coming through on the effects of long periods of childcare,” he said. “The industry talks about outcomes and school readiness but it doesn’t talk anything about what the kids actually go through while they’re at childcare.”

Daycare use comes under fire
MSN NZ 8 Feb 2012
Extended daycare for children is causing stress for many young children which could have long-term consequences for their mental and physical health as adults, a report commissioned by Family First says. The report by British-based American psychologist Aric Sigman said studies had shown increasing levels of the stress hormone cortisol among 70 to 80 per cent of toddlers in daycare.

NZ Newswire / Yahoo News 8 Feb 2012