Close the Pentagon day care center?

The Pentagon wants to. They announced it July 7. The justification was security reasons. The building had already been attacked once, and it semed a bad idea to load up a known military target with children. (Remember that grief the US got from the press in the first Gulf War when the undergraound command center turned out to be loaded with civilians?)

The parents who work at the Pentagon see it differently, even those who don’t use the service. They were given 60 days notice that the service would be closed, without any alternative location opened. Basically, they were sent into the day care marketplace, in market where waiting lists to get in day care are way longer than 60 days. One argues that if there is real danger, the children should be moved out today.

This is a very good Washington Post story about it, but I think you have to register to read it. Here is a somewhat older Washington Times story.

Why can’t they have a Pentagon-run daycare offsite?

Ok, I actually went and registered at The Post. It seems they are going to provide temporary off-site daycare which will turn into permanent off-site daycare.

Frankly, the woman quoted in the article seems whiny to me. How many people in the private sector have free daycare provided to them at their place of business? Not too many. Stop crying about how your employer doesn’t care about you and do what all the other working parents do…shell out the megabucks that daycare costs.

I do agree with the DoD’s decision to get the kids out of there. What parent in their right mind would want their kids stationed at one of the top terrorist targets in the world? The argument that they only have 60 days to find an alternative is moot - the Ft. Meyer daycare will be open until the fall of 2007, when it will be made permanent, plus they’re being aided in finding alternatives.

I really can’t see the parents’ argument at all. This is a clear-cut, slam dunk to me.

I doubt it’s free. I never worked in the Pentagon but I was a Federal employee in DC. I never heard of any of the day care programs for federal workers that was free. If one agency did it, it would probably make people at others riot.

It wasn’t moot until the this option cropped up late in the game. The Pentagon came up with this as an option only after a strong employee backlash. The initial announcement was more or less a service cancellation notice. Finding replacement day care would have been up to the individual parents.