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The mother of a two-year-old girl has sued her daughter’s daycare after they posted a video of the little girl screaming in fear as she terribly gets scared by the Easter Bunny.
The video was taken by the staff at Around the World Learning Center in Kissimmee, Florida. One of the teachers then shared the video on social media and it soon became an internet sensation.
In the video originally shared on Snapchat, little Surai Bryson can be seen screaming in fear as a person dressed as the Easter bunny walks into her classroom.
The chip showing Surai’s horrified reaction was viewed by thousands of people before it made its way to television, with Jimmy Kimmel playing the clip in one of his opening monologues.
Cassandra Bryson, Surai’s mother, says her daughter is now in therapy to cope with the trauma of becoming a subject of ridicule by thousands of people.
The mother says she signed a form which denied the daycare the permission to record or photograph her toddler.
‘What’s most upsetting is that this will be forever. There will never be a time that we can put this behind us. I do believe for years to come that this will rehash and come back up on social media,’ Bryson said.
Her lawsuit claims that the daycare violated Bryson’s privacy request.
‘I think this is an absolute case of negligence. I think there’s also malice here as well on the part of that employee for disseminating that video,’ Attorney Scott Leeds said.
‘As a result of these actions, the lawsuit seeks damages against the daycare center for the severe emotional trauma and mental distress Surai suffered,’ said Leeds.
‘This video continues to be viewed across global social media platforms where some people continue to make derogatory and racist comments.’
Bryson said the video has become a subject of ridicule, with racists bombarding it with abusive and derogatory comments.
‘The world now knows my daughter as the screaming African-American baby, and it’s become a racial issue online. It has gone to places that I couldn’t have even imagined,’ Bryson stated.
She added: ‘I’m just hurt because you can see the distress in her face, and it’s bringing millions of people so much joy and laughter.’
When Bryson confronted the owner, she said that ‘she was sorry.’
‘I told her I signed a paper that I didn’t want my child photographed or videos taken of them. She was aware of that. She had it on file,’ Bryson said.
The attorney said that he aimed to find out which of the employees recorded the video before sharing it online with the caption, ‘I am crying.’
Bryson said: ‘This should never happen again. I know it won’t, but if there’s something that could be done in regards to cellphone policies at schools and focusing on education for children, which is the main goal for sending children to daycare – getting a head start – it’s definitely what I’m looking to be the outcome of this.’
Surai’s grandmother, Mary Bryson-Robinson, who picked the toddler that day, revealed how the school downplayed the whole incident by telling her that Surai got afraid of the Easter Bunny.
‘My granddaughter looked petrified. Her face changed. It was not the same child that I dropped off that day or the child that I know,’ Robinson told WKMG-TV.
‘For a bunny of that size to appear, I’m sure it scared the daylights out of her.’
The daycare hasn’t made any comments so far and said that it was investigating the matter.
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