Daycare Dilemma

By: Sheila Brummer Email
By: Sheila Brummer Email

When the Mayor announced plans for a new homeless shelter in downtown Omaha, an immediate issue came up. What about the daycare across the street?

Union Pacific Railroad operates a daycare at 14th and Webster. Several parents contracted Six on Your Side concerned about the plan. However, they didn’t want to talk on camera because they say it's prohibited by Union Pacific policy.

However, Union Pacific provided spokesperson Kathryn Blackwell.

“The Problem is we’re not hearing that much directly. They’re kind of communicating amongst themselves. As a parent, I have been part of those e-mails. People are concerned no doubt about it.”

Blackwell’s four-year-old daughter attends the daycare which plans to beef-up security. Blackwell also says a meeting will take place on November 1st to address the issue. Union Pacific, the Mayor’s office, and the operators of the shelter plan to meet with parents.

“They’re outraged and acting with emotion. No doubt they need to step back and learn about the facts.”

Mike Saklar, Director of the Siena Francis House, says the new shelter may actually cut down on the number of homeless who already walk the streets near the daycare. He plans to work with his new neighbors.

“I understand their fears. It’s pretty much the fear of the unknown. It’s incumbent on me to deal with those issues and address that.”

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