AUGUSTA — Democratic lawmakers and advocates for children say Maine’s latest child care regulations roll back safety and quality standards.

New emergency regulations that took effect Wednesday allow in-home child care providers to exclude their own children from staffing ratios. The rules remove a provision that allows parents to visit their children at any point without notice.

New rules also require providers to test their water for lead.

The Department of Health and Human Services has defended the rules as helping increase the number of family child care providers. The department said state law allows it to consider only children’s health and safety and not overall quality of care.

The Maine Children’s Alliance said some changes need legislative approval.

Democratic Rep. Patty Hymanson says she’ll work within the legislative process to protect kids.

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or login first for digital access. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.