Who is watching the person who is watching your kids?
More parents are making the decision to hire private investigators to spy on nannies in the wake of some high profile stories about neglectful and abusive child caretakers.
Private Investigator, Tom Ruskin, recently told ABC News that the number of people who are hiring investigators to keep an eye on nannies and babysitters is definitely on an upswing.
Hiring a private investigator to watch the person who is watching your children can be a sobering decision for parents, since it basically means that you don’t trust the people that you have hired to take care of your child’s safety and well-being while you are not around.
However, pre-employment background checks, screening and references don’t always tell you the whole story when deciding to employ a full-time nanny or babysitter for your kids.
Private Investigators can do surveillance work on a potential nanny or babysitter before the decision is made to hire them. Having a PI do preemptive surveillance work on someone can reveal personal details about the potential caretaker that a background check would miss or not cover at all.
Some of the issues that nanny private investigators often see are “distraction” or “negligence” issues that wouldn’t show up on background check reports.
Private investigators can record and report on common “nanny distraction” issues. Distraction issues can include things like unattended children and strollers; spending too much time texting or talking on smartphones or ignoring the children while socializing with other people while out in public.
The use of nanny cams can only tell you what is going on within the limited area that the camera covers and most nannies and babysitters who know that these electronic surveillance devices are in use will adjust their behavior accordingly.
However, professional investigators can keep an eye on what goes on in public areas that the nanny cam doesn’t cover. The nanny’s public behavior is often more revealing than what is caught at home on a nanny cam.
Hiring a private investigator to spy on your nanny or a potential caretaker can be expensive, but some parents feel that the cost is worth it for the peace of mind it gives them while they are at work or away from their children.
For parents who can’t afford to hire a private investigator, there are some other options.
It is advised that nanny cams and security cameras in and around the house be left on at all times. Eventually, a problem caretaker will forget about the cameras and their real personality or bad habits will get recorded.
Parents can also ask neighbors to keep an eye out on the house for any suspicious activity while they are away.
In addition, parents can do their own spy work by arriving home early or showing up unannounced to places where they know the kids and nanny will be.
Some mothers are help each other by keeping an eye out in public for nannies and babysitters who behave badly. These mommy spies will use smartphones to take pictures or record video of child caretakers who are being neglectful or abusive to children and share the evidence with other parents.