Washington, DC

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“Dear PoP,

My nephews were sent home from Day Care Monday because they may or may not have seen a bite on one of them last week. They will not be allowed back to day care until we get an exterminator out to check our home for bed bugs. The kids have no strange bites and we have not seen any bed bugs in the house. They also didn’t mention this last week when they may have seen the bite.

The exterminators we have called will not come out to the house until we can verify that we have bed bugs so that they can treat the problem. One of the companies mentioned that if the Day Care had no proof that one of the kids had a bite, they can not legally send them home or bar them from going back. They also said that the day care can’t request documentation that exterminators can not legally provide (letter of proof of no bed bugs).

Should I spend $500 for an exterminator to come and treat 1 room in order to have documentation that we have been treated?”

Wow, this sounds like hysteria. Not that I would minimize the fear of bed bugs [we spoke about their stigma and difficulty in exterminating here] but how could the Day Care even tell that the bite was a bed bug bite rather than say a mosquito? What do you guys think – is this absurd or is the day care just being cautious? What should the writer of this letter do?


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