This was on today. Interesting, your thoughts?

More Parents Are Hiring Investigators to Follow Their Nannies

Parents freaked out by the frightening stories of nannies neglecting their charges -- or worse -- are taking what some might call extreme measures when it comes to vetting caretakers for their kids.

The instances of people hiring professional investigators to spy on their kids' babysitters is "absolutely" on the rise, according to Tom Ruskin, head of CMP Group Investigations.

"We are getting more calls now than ever before," Ruskin told ABC News. "It's an extreme step. You're basically saying I don't really trust this person who is with my children and I want to know what's happening, I want to know firsthand. You have to feel comfortable with this person who is basically joining your family as an outsider."

ABC News followed a private investigator from Ruskin's firm as he trailed the potential sitter for the four-month-old baby of a new mom.

"It's very hard to find somebody you can trust," the mom, whose identity is not being revealed, told ABC News. "I'm a first-time mom, going back to work, I need to make sure I'm going to be able to concentrate at work. I don't want to worry about what's going on at home. I want to make sure I'm going to hire somebody who is responsible enough."

Ruskin assured the new mom that if the investigator spotted anything questionable, he'd be in touch immediately.

While one of Ruskin's private investigators once found a stroller left unattended on the street as the nanny shopped in a store, "nanny distraction" is actually quite common, said Ruskin. The "nanny is either talking to other nannies, texting or on the phone, not paying attention to the children," he added.

With the use of nanny cams -- and the knowledge of their existence -- so commonplace, what's going on outside the home may be most telling, said Christine Irwin, founder and moderator of the popular parenting Facebook page UES Mommas.

The page is popular for moms looking for advice on everything from organic formula to kids music classes. Another kind of posting has become increasingly popular: moms taking and posting photos of nannies or babysitters they perceive to be behaving badly.

Irwin is quick to point out, however, that "99 percent" of nannies are good ones. But she says the so-called mom spies are trying to alert other moms about "unfortunate situations" when they occur.

"I think that we're all in this for the same thing, the love of a child. [A mom] sees another child and she sees something that's wrong and she looks at her own child and she says if this was my nanny, I'd want to know about this," Irwin said.

For the mom that used CMP's services, the findings were positive. The investigator gave the sitter a perfect score.

"Once you left she began her walk, up and down the hills, was really good at crossing the street," he told the mom. "When wind blew she checked the comforter. This is someone you'd want to hire."

"There's nothing too extreme to make sure your child is safe," the mom said.

For those who can't afford a private investigator, Ruskin suggests parents leave cameras in the house on at all times. "After awhile," he said, "everyone forgets they're there and the real behavior shows through." He also suggested parents act as their own spies, showing up unannounced at places they know that child will be with the sitter, and watching for a few minutes before approaching.

His bottom line: "If your gut is telling you something is wrong, 99 percent of the time, it is."

Here is a link to the story if your interested


Rebecca said...

I saw this news story and I wondered if nanny stalking was becoming too extreme. I can understand a nanny cam, but hiring a PI??

nc said...

I think as long as the PI isn't forever, but just in the beginning, there isn't anything wrong with it. Having said that, the parents should drop-in from time to time, whether that's at home or at the playground, just to make sure everything is still going well.

Anonymous said...

I'd quit. On the spot. Call the parents and tell them to come home immediately.

But then again, I recognize when I'm being tailed.

Anonymous said...

Can we please go back to nanny submitted stories and advice and no more articles yiu can find anywhere don't make this site lame!

Leigh Raymer said...

please do! submit nanny stories, advice, salary advice - anything. I am a firm believer that there should be something - anything- every day

Anonymous said...

A PI watching the nanny on the clock, what ever, I wouldn't mind it. I am a good nanny with nothing to hide. However, on my day off or off time, I have an issue with that. If I go out to the bar and dance/drink, so be it I am an adult of age. If I am seen with my significant other, kissing, so be it--again I am legally aloud to. All that matters is that a nanny treats a child right and doesn't do illegal things (drugs, shootings, robberies, ect).

I am a nanny with body modifications, I just love the nanny family who sends me to the health club and want me to change in the open-- sorry my body mod's on my privates are staying private. I just don't want an employer to fire me because I have piercings where you can't see unless I am naked.

Leigh Raymer said...

Previous poster - really good points - i did not even think about the view of tailing the nanny off the job.

about the piercings - if you wish to elaborate on that in a guest writer mode - contact us here,that is a very interesting topic