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Heavenly Blessings appeals closure order

Revealed name: Kim Wilson (File photograph by Akil Simmons)

A nursery shut down after a 12-month-old boy suffered a serious head injury has filed an appeal against the Government’s closure order, a lawyer for the daycare centre said yesterday.

Heavenly Blessings Nursery and Preschool was told to cease operations last week as police investigated how the little boy was hurt.

Michael Weeks, then Minister of Social Development and Sport, said it was too early to confirm if the injury had happened at the nursery or at the child’s home, but that the Pembroke facility was closed as a precaution.

Sharon Rampersad-Ible, who is acting for the nursery, confirmed yesterday an appeal had been lodged.

She said it was hoped a court hearing would be held soon.

Ms Rampersad-Ible, of law firm Smith and Co, said: “The appeal has been filed on November 6, 2018, and we requested the matter be heard on an urgent basis.”

A date for the case had not yet been set and the lawyer provided no further details about the contents of the challenge “because the matter is before the courts”.

She added: “The employees of Heavenly Blessings continue to assist the police with their ongoing investigations into the matter.”

The boy was admitted to the King Edward VII Memorial Hospital’s intensive care unit on October 26.

He was flown overseas for further medical treatment the next day and his condition was later said to have improved.

Mr Weeks, who has since been removed from Cabinet in a reshuffle, did not name the nursery but said last week there had been “a few” previous incidents at the business. He added that a letter had been hand-delivered to the nursery to order it to “cease operation until the completion of a police investigation”.

Kim Wilson, the health minister, revealed the name of the daycare centre two days later and said that the Government was “acutely aware of the need for quality care and the history of concerns”.

Ms Wilson also outlined measures to increase safety and the quality of care at all of Bermuda’s daycare providers.

She said the Government was considering the introduction of an “inter-agency team” which could review concerns over services and “facilitate interventions, learning and improvements as needed”.

Ms Wilson added: “Parents need to be able to go to work and know and trust that the persons that are watching their children and caring for them will ensure their safety and promote their optimal healthy development.”

A police spokesman said yesterday “inquiries continue”. The Government did not respond to a request for comment.