Church and childcare center in legal battle after doors were padlocked

Church and childcare center in legal battle after doors were padlocked
Friendship Baptist Church terminated the lease and locked the doors of the Friendship Childcare Learning Center Monday. (Source: WALB)
Friendship Child Care Learning Center's Director Sylvia Hart was locked out of her daycare on Monday morning. (Source: WALB)
Friendship Child Care Learning Center's Director Sylvia Hart was locked out of her daycare on Monday morning. (Source: WALB)
Pastor Carl White (Source: WALB)
Pastor Carl White (Source: WALB)

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Parents are concerned as their daycare center was closed on Monday, and is now involved in a legal matter.

The Friendship Childcare Center on West Broad Avenue is renting their facility from Friendship Missionary Baptist Church.

Monday the church padlocked the doors.

The pastor told WALB that the daycare center has been renting out their building for quite some time.

The church notified the daycare in March they were terminating the lease and gave them a 90-day notice but the daycare refused to leave.

Friendship Child Care Learning Center's Director Sylvia Hart was locked out of her daycare on Monday morning.

"We have chains on the door and we have padlocks on the doors," said Hart.

The child care center hosts approximately nine children for their summer program and parents had to take them to another location.

Hart said she was not notified that there would be chains on the door.

"If they would've told me then I could've said well let me get some things from here but no one told me they would be doing this to us," said Hart.

Friendship Missionary Baptist Church owns the building that the childcare center runs out of.

Pastor Carl White explained the child care center was fully aware of the lease being terminated after they could not come to an agreement about a rent increase back in December.

"We gave notice in March of this year that we would be severing the relationship," said White.

And when we asked Hart about the notice she said this:

"It started back in December but then I didn't get any information from that until March," said Hart.

But she didn't want to explain what information she received.

"I would rather not discuss that at this time," said Hart.

White said not housing the child care center was best for the church.

"We want to make sure that we're making the proper decisions for the future and the health of Friendship Missionary Baptist Church," said White.

After this, the church received a call that Hart decided to take legal action.

"Basically what are you going to do if the daycare doesn't get out," White.

The child care center is open as of now and will remain open until an agreement has been reached by both parties.

The pastor said he hopes they can settle this matter out of court but if it comes to that, they will go to court.

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