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To be annoyed that my local Sure Start Children's Centre wouldn't let me change my baby there?

(64 Posts)
Habichuela Fri 22-Mar-13 11:53:34

Yesterday I was at a cafe with a friend, I went to use the baby changing facilities but the cafe is brand new and the changing table thing was not yet attached to the wall. I then remembered that there was a local Sure Start Children's Centre very near by, so thinking that they are a "Milk Spot" and supposed to be a one stop shop for all things child-related, my friend and I popped over so I could use the baby changing.

To my dismay the receptionist refused for me to enter, saying that they don't just let "anybody in". I thought this was out of order but she refused point blank to let me in!

Am I being unreasonable to be shocked and annoyed at this?

Habichuela Fri 22-Mar-13 13:55:28

hb84, I think I will follow that advice

Habichuela Fri 22-Mar-13 13:56:53

Pigsmummy, I think the point point is, mine is a drop in centre for baby feeding so I assumed it would be OK to drop in a change him!

Habichuela Fri 22-Mar-13 13:58:55

Havingkitties, your message really made me laugh! But I see the serious side too. Thank you for making me see that I'm not being unreasonable! I think I might just write them !

DumSpiroSpero Fri 22-Mar-13 14:38:31

I am gobsmacked! I work at a Surestart Centre (admittedly a big one). We don't always have groups on, but we have a cafe and even if it isn't open anyone (even without kids) can come in and use the space/play area/books, feed, change and get cold water or a hot drink from the machine.

Even if w were holding an INSET day, I can't imagine anyone I work with turning away someone that needs to change their baby.

With an attitude like that they'll be lucky to stay open in the current climate - ridiculous.

Tanith Fri 22-Mar-13 16:26:30

Children's Centres are no longer a one-stop shop for all things child-related. Since the coalition government was elected, they have had their funding severely cut back; some are even in the hands of private nursery chains.

crashdoll Fri 22-Mar-13 17:09:26

"Thank you for making me see that I'm not being unreasonable!"

You appeared to think you were not being unreasonable anyway. hmm

ariane5 Fri 22-Mar-13 17:28:41


I don't see how they could say no to a mother wanting to use baby change facilities in a childrens centre??

MummytoKatie Fri 22-Mar-13 17:43:25

I think it that circumstance I'd have remembered that I hadn't had dd weighed for ages (I was surprisingly un-pfb about it so it would have been true!) and so signed in for the baby clinic.

DumSpiroSpero Fri 22-Mar-13 19:05:18

The funding issue is the all the more reason for them not to turn people away - we have to prove how many people come through our doors, the demographic of our users and whether we are hitting our 'target groups'.

If someone came into us to use the baby change facilities, we'd probably pin them to the nearest chair and give them a blow-by-blow account of all our facilities and services, before sending them on their way with a selection of flyers, programmes and application forms for the nursery school!

Ragwort Fri 22-Mar-13 19:10:06

YANBU - as others have said, this is a service provided by the tax payer and the receptionist sounds totally obnoxious not to allow a perfectly reasonable request.

Why do so many people love abusing their position of 'power' by being difficult?

Years ago I worked in customer services and one of our staff refused to allow a member of the public to use the toilet, it escalated into a huge complaint and could so easily have been dealt with by using common sense and kindness - but that seems to be a totally old fashioned view these days with all our 'health and safety' legislation.

Sizzlesthedog Fri 22-Mar-13 19:42:25

YANBU. I would have done the same. They are normally friendly places. I would complain by email or phone to the centre manager. I thought they were drop in places for support, who knows what type of day you were having and needed a bit of kindness. Our local one is struggling so much due to funding cuts, as all of them are. I'm sure they would have been happy to have helped someone and reached their targets.

Footface Fri 22-Mar-13 20:13:42

I worked in a ss centre, and at one point we were threaten by particular parents and their family, due to child protection issues.

We made it policy then to not be in the centre on our own with people. It may well be a case that the receptionist was working alone that day

Shlurpbop Fri 22-Mar-13 20:17:04

YANBU - my local centre is brilliant and I would often pop in just to change a nappy and have a quick chat with the staff. Was a real lifesaver sometimes smile

b4bunnies Fri 22-Mar-13 20:18:50

its ridiculous

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