Parents of Baby Who Died at Little Big Blessings Daycare Seek Answers
Posted on behalf of RizkLaw on Mar 26, 2019 in Firm News
Ever since their nine-and-a-half-month-old baby died on August 24, 2018, William Cannon's parents have searched for answers. Cannon was found unresponsive at Little Big Blessings daycare on August 22, 2018, and even after extraordinary medical efforts at Oregon Health & Science University, he died in his mother and father's arms just two days later.
Unfortunately, William's father Tyler and mother Jenna's search for answers has been in vain. Rizk Law is also searching for any information about William's death – anyone who has details should contact us as soon as possible. Our firm wants to prevent this kind of tragedy from ever happening again.
Rizk Law attorneys Richard Rizk, Alex Pletch and Mat Riberdy are representing William's parents.
Past Problems at Little Big Blessings
Only four months before William Cannon's death, Little Big Blessings was cited for unsafe sleep practices. In April, inspectors visited the facility and saw a sleeping baby on a pillow inside a bassinet. Under state rules, infants must be put on a flat surface for sleeping. They should not have a pillow because it can block their airwaves.
Inspectors returned to the facility the next month when they found out the facility had let employee background checks lapse. The daycare center was placed on pending status until the checks had been updated.
Regulators Have Stayed Quiet About Cannon's Death
According to an article on OregonLive published March 5, child care regulators in Oregon still have not informed the public about William Cannon's death. Under federal regulations, states are required to disclose the deaths of any children at licensed child care facilities.
Reporting deaths quickly was not a problem until Cannon's death occurred – officials usually reported deaths within days or weeks. However, safety at child care facilities in Oregon became a huge issue in the race for governor. Shortly before Cannon's death, a political attack ad had been running criticizing the governor's record on child care.
After being asked to confirm the baby's death by The Oregonian/OregonLive, the Office of Child Care finally confirmed the death on March 5.
Initially, a spokeswoman for the Office of Child Care said she was not authorized to acknowledge the death because partner agencies had not authorized the disclosure of the information. The spokeswoman also referenced an internal policy as the basis for not disclosing information. According to records, state regulators revised the policies that were referenced on Aug. 27, the first work day after William Cannon's death.
However, as of March 5, the state's official website did not list the baby's death. The spokeswoman denied that officials violated federal rules about reporting deaths at licensed child care facilities. She said even though deaths must be disclosed in a timely manner, there is no specific date when this must be done.
Governor's Office Knew About the Death
Even though the public was not informed about the death in August, the governor's office knew. When the baby died, the Office of Child Care sent a proposed public statement to the governor's office. OregonLive also obtained three emails showing the Office of Child Care was ready to reveal the boy's death if asked about it.
At the request of an unnamed detective, the proposed statement was changed, according to other records that were obtained.
A spokeswoman for the governor said the decision about not disclosing the boy's death was not politically motivated – she said statements are often prepared that never get made.
Contact Rizk Law Today
Do you have any information about William Cannon's death or problems at Little Big Blessings?
Contact our trusted attorneys today with any information. Our firm is committed to preventing this kind of tragedy from ever happening again.