Carer ‘tied toddler to chair and threatened him’
A NURSERY worker faces being struck off for allegedly tying a toddler to a chair and threatening to “batter him” while he was in her care.
Samantha Wilson is also accused of tying up the one-year-old in order to “force-feed” him while she was employed as a trainee at Bruntsfield House Nursery.
She will face four charges of abuse and harm, and could be removed from the professional register of the Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) following a conduct hearing due to take place next week.
It is alleged Ms Wilson tied the toddler to a chair on a number of occasions between August and October 2012.
In September of that year, she is said to have told the boy she would “batter him” if he did not “sit down” before tying him to a chair with a scarf.
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She has also been accused of carrying out the same act twice the following month, tying the toddler down with a dressing-up costume tie on the fourth occasion in order to “force-feed” him.
SSSC staff will use next week’s hearing to rule on the charges against Ms Wilson, before considering whether they amount to misconduct and a breach of the social services code of practice.
Managers at the nursery said the incidents were alleged to have taken place long before it was acquired by Little Voices Nurseries Ltd in May last year.
They said legal advisers had made them aware of the charges against Ms Wilson and that an overhaul of policies and staff training had been carried out.
Alistair Tait, the company’s director, said: “We are the current owners of Bruntsfield House Nursery but we took over in May 2014 and all of this happened under previous owners and a previous set of managers.
“We have been made aware of the case by our lawyers [and] on-site management have been in touch with social services because the case is coming up [at the SSSC].”
He added: “What we have done in the last eight months is significantly improve all policies and procedures, as well as training and upgrading of staff.”
Parent representatives in the Capital have voiced concern over the allegations and said families would always demand the highest standards of care irrespective of whether a nursery is managed independently or by the city council.
Lindsay Law, parent representative on the council’s education committee, said: “It’s a difficult case.
“I think parents would have an expectation that minimum standards of safety and care are in place at all nurseries, be they private or state-run.”
Ms Wilson did not respond to a request for comment.