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KARA tracks current news about at risk children bringing transparency and attention to our youngest and most vulnerable citizens.
These pages are a sampling of what should be reported – the great majority of child trauma, abuse & tragedy are never reported.
American states are struggling to find answers for saving at risk children and reversing the explosive growth of child abuse and neglect in our communities.
37% of children overall and 57% of Black children are reported to child protection services in America by the time they turn 18. (American Journal of Public Health January 2017)
6-12 million children a year are reported to child protection services each year and in many states, 1/3 of foster children are required to take psychotropic medicines Florida reports 48% of its foster children are forced to take Prozac like drugs.
ALL ADULTS ARE THE PROTECTORS OF ALL CHILDREN
Compilation of information and writing on the Sad Stories pages are the hard work of David Vang, Mike Toronto, Jamar Weston, Adolf Nchanj and Blaz Zlate, Callie Benscoter, (student volunteers at Century College) Katie Frake, Boston College, Julie O, and KARA.
Recommend the exhibit to your college/university/museum – start the conversation where you live.
CA: Basha requests reassignment; new judge to hear juvenile dependency matters
Davis Enterprise – April 28, 2017
Yolo County Superior Court Judge Steven Basha will cease hearing juvenile dependency matters effective in June, Presiding Judge Janet Gaard announced Thursday. The announcement came two days after the Yolo County Board of Supervisors voted to send a letter to Gaard requesting that Basha be reassigned.
CT: No charges over sexual misconduct claims at boarding school
Associated Press – April 27, 2017
Police in Connecticut say former faculty and staff members accused of sexual misconduct at the prestigious Choate Rosemary Hall boarding school can’t be charged because too much time has passed since the alleged crimes occurred.
Also: Ousted Over Sexual Misconduct Claims, and On to the Next Teaching Job: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/23/nyregion/ousted-over-sexual-misconduct-claims-and-on-to-the-next-teaching-job.html?_r=0
DC: Race, Class, and Sex Trafficking in the Nation’s Capital
EDGE Media Network – April 27, 2017
In the past month, the media has exploded with stories of the thousands of missing children reported each year to the police in Washington, D.C. The numbers and other facts may have been misleading but the truth remains that a disproportionately high number of these children come from the two poorest areas of the nation’s capital.
FL: House Gives Final Approval To “Barahona Bill”
CBSMiami/NSF – April 27, 2017
In one of the state’s most notorious child welfare cases in recent years, the House on Wednesday gave final approval to a bill that calls for paying $3.75 million in the death of 10-year-old Nubia Barahona and injuries suffered by her brother, Victor.
MS: Children’s Advocacy Center
Northside Sun – April 27, 2017
According to a study by Christianity Today, 20 percent of all congregations include at least one convicted sex offender. This percentage is probably an underestimate because most sex offenders are never caught. Though the topic is difficult to discuss, it’s important to acknowledge that churches are, in fact, a target for perpetrators.
OK: Bill signed to better protect underage victims of human trafficking
Shawnee News-Star – April 26, 2017
A bill to strengthen Oklahoma’s human trafficking laws and better protect underage victims was signed into law Monday. Senate Bill 34, by Sen. Kim David and Rep. Scott Biggs, provides that lack of knowledge of the age of the victim does not constitute a defense for the human trafficking of a minor.
OR: Olson: State needs foster homes
Albany Democrat-Herald – April 27, 2017
Oregon has approximately 21,000 children who need placement in foster homes, but only 1,800 foster homes, said state Rep. Andy Olson, during a community meeting in downtown Albany on Thursday night. “You can see the problem there,” he added.
OR: Oregon Gov. Kate Brown calls for reforms to ‘under-resourced’ child welfare system
Statesman Journal – April 12, 2017
The Oregon Democrat in an interview Tuesday evening highlighted the urgency of fixing a child welfare system she said has been “under-resourced and under-funded for years” and outlined reform priorities on multiple fronts. For her, caseworkers and foster families need support and training, children need a voice in the system and caseworkers need legal representation.
RI: Senate approves mental health measures as Mental Health Month kicks off (Press release)
State of Rhode Island General Assembly – April 28, 2017
As advocates gathered at the State House to kick off a month of activities promoting mental health, the Senate today approved several measures aimed at improving access to effective mental health care in Rhode Island.
WI: Wisconsin adoption process considered lengthy, difficult
WQOW – April 28, 2017
New legislation could change the way Wisconsin handles in-state adoptions. Some complain the process is too lengthy and difficult.
US: Cardinal Health : CN opioid suit will test reach of tribal court
4-Traders – April 27, 2017
There are questions now that a lawsuit has been filed by the Cherokee Nation in tribal court, accusing six drug distributors and pharmacies of failing to prevent the flow of illegally prescribed opioids.
US: Grandparents, Other Relatives and Advocates to Rally on Lawn of U.S. Capitol (Press release)
Children’s Defense Fund – April 27, 2017
On May 10, 2017 relative caregivers, children and advocates from around the country will join members of Congress on the lawn of the U.S. Capitol Building for the 5th National GrandRally. The spotlight will be on the critical role grandparents and other relatives play in providing safe, loving, and permanent families for children. The opioid crisis has spurred a major increase in the number of children entering foster care, after years of decline.
Information Gateway resource: Kinship Care: https://www.childwelfare.gov/topics/outofhome/kinship/
India: Juvenile Justice System for effective legal assistance to children
Morung Express – April 27, 2017
With an aim to ensure effective legal assistance to children who comes in conflict with law or are in need of care and protection, Dimapur District Legal Services Authority (DDLSA) conducted one day training workshop on Juvenile Justice System at conference hall, district court, Dimapur on April 26.
AR: 8th Worst State for Children’s Health (Includes aduio)
Public News Service – April 27, 2017
The report, released this week by the marketing firm WalletHub, ranked Arkansas 44th among the 50 states and District of Columbia for the overall health of its kids under age 18 – eighth worst in the country. WalletHub analyst Jill Gonzalez said the survey examined 28 key indicators of cost, quality and access to children’s health care.
Report: 2017’s Best & Worst States for Children’s Health Care: https://wallethub.com/edu/best-states-for-child-health/34455/
AZ: How Arizona Fixed Its Broken Child Welfare System in 2 Years
Governing – April 27, 2017
For much of the past decade, Arizona’s child welfare agency has been in crisis. The number of children entering the state’s foster care system grew 92 percent from 2005 to 2015. It was such a mess that in 2014, then-Gov. Jan Brewer created an agency dedicated to child welfare — something only 10 other states had done at the time. Today, things are looking a lot better.
AZ: Pregnant Women, Newborns on Front Lines of Arizona’s Opioid Epidemic
Chronicle of Social Change – April 26, 2017
Sanchez is just one of thousands of Arizona women who have in recent years become pregnant while still using drugs, often prescription opioids or heroin – just a small piece of a nationwide opioid epidemic. A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study of 28 states found that babies born with an opioid dependency tripled in the 15 years ending in 2013. Those babies often face severe health consequences.
CA: Board Votes 4-1 to Issue Request for Blanket Recusal of Judge Basha
Davis Enterprise – April 26, 2017
In a vote that perhaps surprised even Supervisor Matt Rexroad, who brought the issue forward, the Yolo County Board of Supervisors voted 4-1 to issue notice of filing a blanket Penal Code section 170.6 motion to remove Judge Steven Basha from presiding over Juvenile Dependency hearings. As Mr. Rexroad wrote in a letter, “Foster Parents strongly believed there is a ‘pervasive bias’ by Judge Basha and the court system towards birth parents and reunification. Those interviewed state that over his years on the bench, the Judge ‘has been outrageously pro reunification, and takes actions that negatively impact Foster Families.’
CA: Los Angeles’ Tech Community Steps up for Foster Youth
Chronicle of Social Change – April 26, 2017
Los Angeles is primed to be the region where startups not only grow quickly, but correctly; a place where tech resources and entrepreneurial thinking are applied to societal problems in a proactive and positive way, making L.A. the hub for collective progress for years to come.
DC: Non-Profit Helps Teens Who Leave Home (Video)
NBC Washington – April 27, 2017
In D.C., many young people who leave home are escaping socioeconomic problems,. Sasha Bruce, the only youth-specific emergency shelter in the District, is helping the city as it makes child welfare reforms.
FL: Lawmakers agree to pay surviving Barahona victim $3.75 million
Miami Herald – April 26, 2017
The Florida Legislature has agreed to pay the surviving victim of one of the most horrific child abuse cases in state history $3.75 million in legal damages Wednesday and sent the bill to the governor for his signature.
Also: Innocents Lost – A Miami Herald I-Team Investigation (Video): http://www.miamiherald.com/news/article63545647.html
HI: Court-appointed expert outlines years of abuse in Peter Boy case, missteps by Child Protective Services (Includes video)
KHON – April 26, 2017
Documents reveal “Peter Boy” Kema endured horrific abuse in his six short years of life. A court-appointed expert who investigated his disappearance and death said if Child Protective Services had followed the law, Peter Boy would be alive today.
IL: EDITORIAL Changing course on child welfare
Windy City Times – April 26, 2017
Windy City Times (WCT) just concluded a lengthy three-part series on troubles at child welfare agencies in Illinois and across the U.S. when it comes to supporting parents of children who present as transgender or gender nonconforming.
Also: National groups respond to WCT’s DCFS investigation: http://www.windycitymediagroup.com/lgbt/National-groups-respond-to-WCTs-DCFS-investigation/58947.html
Three part series:
KY: Revolution needed to stop abuse | Terry Brooks
Courier-Journal – April 26, 2017
Eliminating child abuse requires the courageous and rare philanthropic leadership that Kosair Charities exemplifies. It requires the on-the-ground efforts by the more than three dozen Face It partners. It also requires decisive and bold actions from state leaders in Frankfort.
LA: Reporters find trauma helps explain challenges facing students in New Orleans in a whole new way
Center for Health Journalism Community News (University of Southern California) – April 26, 2017
By talking to youth health advocates and child welfare organizations, we found a health lens to tell the story we’d struggled to tell. Trauma is the word that unlocked the framework we needed. We found a gap between the mental and behavioral health needs of the city’s children, and the school system’s punishment-based, “no excuses” model for academic performance.
MA: Arose Nielsen of Belchertown nominated as Juvenile Court judge
Republican – April 26, 2017
Gov. Charlie Baker has nominated Arose Nielsen to be a Juvenile Court judge sitting in Western Massachusetts. According to a biography provided by Baker’s office, Nielsen has been partner at Carvajal & Nielsen PC since 2007, where she specializes in family law and child welfare in the Springfield Juvenile Court and Hampden County Probate and Family Court. She has been appointed a guardian ad litem in some Juvenile Court cases.
MN: Child abuse rates spike in Minnesota
Brainerd Dispatch – April 26, 2017
Child abuse rates in Minnesota are soaring. In total, 39,531 Minnesota children were the subject of child maltreatment reports assessed by county and tribal agencies – a 25 percent increase from 2015.
MN: Ending a statistic: WSU students organize child abuse prevention walk
Winona Daily News – April 26, 2017
Every day, five children die from child abuse. But the students in Winona State University social work professor Ruth Charles’ child welfare class want the community to know this statistic does not have to exist.
MT: Leading by example: How Missoula Rep. Kim Dudik did Montanans proud in Helena (Opinion)
Missoula Independent – April 27, 2017
Dudik is an attorney, and many of the bills she sponsored this year had to do with reforming the code of Montana. Her proposals patched holes in the state’s anti-bullying laws, revised definitions of sexual assault and restructured the office of the public defender. Much of her work had to do with children, addressing issues from foster care to abuse court to human trafficking. Were it not for her efforts, children might have been an underserved constituency this year.
MT: Governor Bullock Signs Bill to Create Child Abuse Review Commission (Press release)
Office of Montana Governor Steve Bullock – April 26, 2017
Governor Steve Bullock today signed a bill to create the Child Abuse and Neglect Review Commission and thanked child protection specialists during the Prevent Child Abuse and Neglect Conference. “As a father and as governor, I will always fight for Montana’s vulnerable children,” said Governor Bullock. “Our work this session doesn’t end today. We will continue to find and implement commonsense solutions that save lives and provide a brighter future for children across the state.”
NC: Churches encouraged to participate in Foster Care Sunday
Hickory Record – April 27, 2017
Churches in Catawba County are being asked to participate in Foster Care Sunday on May 21. This event will emphasize the need for more foster parents throughout the county.
NC: State House Unanimously Passes Rylan’s Law
Pilot – April 26, 2017
The state House on Wednesday unanimously approved legislation named after a Moore County toddler who drowned a year ago while under DSS supervision that supporters hope will prevent the deaths of other children at the hands of abusive parents.
OH: How the Ohio House wants to spend additional $171 million to fight drugs (Includes video)
Columbus Dispatch – April 26, 2017
Unhappy with Gov. John Kasich flat-funding the fight against Ohio’s killer opioid epidemic, House Republicans want to pump another $170.6 million over the next two years into drug prevention and treatment.
OK: A call to action: Learning about foster care
Grand Lake News – April 26, 2017
More than 80 events and at least one informational meeting in each of Oklahoma’s 77 counties were planned as part of Governor Fallin declaring a Statewide Foster Care Call to Action Day last week.
OR: Beyond the Blue Ribbon
Bend Source – April 26, 2017
Gov. Kate Brown has indicated that she believes we are approaching a crisis situation in the child welfare arena, and that we need to bring people together to protect children’s safety. She has spoken to the issue of increasing funding for these services-and last week, put a state hiring freeze in effect. During an interview with the Source Weekly last week, she told us the hiring freeze was aimed, at least in part, toward finding the money for critical services for children and families. As it stands, the current budget proposals being floated in Salem include significant cuts to education and health and human services.
OR: Moms in crisis turned away at OnTrack due to state sanctions
Mail Tribune – April 26, 2017
A state prohibition on accepting new clients at an OnTrack program has forced it to turn away mothers who have pleaded for help with their addictions and sought a safe home for their children. “We have 48 clients who are desperate to come into the Mom’s Program,” said Amanda Lindley Krug, program director. “The children are suffering.”
TX: Bexar County seeing more reports to CPS than 2016 (Includes video)
KHOU – April 26, 2017
More children are being reported to Child Protective Services in Bexar County in 2017, compared to 2016. Bexar County is also reportedly seeing higher rates of children being taken in by CPS than the Texas average.
TX: CTX has need for more foster parents (Includes video)
KXXV – April 26, 2017
Central Texas is seriously lacking in the number of foster homes available.
TX: Student LGBT Activists Rally at UH to Condemn Host of “Religious Freedom” Bills
Houston Press – April 26, 2017
On Tuesday, LGBT students and allies held rallies across Texas asking conservative lawmakers to stop pushing laws that give Texans the right to discriminate, in the name of religion, against a whole group of already-vulnerable people.
WA: The Long Way Home
Inlander – April 26, 2017
It’s a cruel fate for many abused and/or neglected kids in Washington like Tim, who end up languishing in foster care and eventually turning into criminals. Currently, there are around 50 foster kids who have been sent out of state because their needs are so intensive that nobody in Washington would take them.
WA: Will the Legislature do what’s needed for foster care?
Crosscut – April 26, 2017
Republicans and Democrats in Olympia insist they want to shore up the state’s failing foster care system, but major reforms could falter as they head into a special legislative session to hammer out budget and policy proposals that remain miles apart.
WA: Gov. Inslee Lowers Bar to Clear Prostitution Convictions
Associated Press – April 25, 2017
Gov. Jay Inslee has approved a bill that would allow victims of sex trafficking to be cleared of a prostitution conviction even if they’ve committed other crimes as a result of being trafficked.
US: How Trans Youth Are at Risk in Child Welfare, Juvenile Justice Systems
Chronicle of Social Change – April 26, 2017
Lydia’s experience is not an anomaly, according to a new study about gender nonconforming youth in state custody, released Monday by authors from Lambda Legal, Children’s Rights and the Center for the Study of Social Policy.
Report: Safe Havens: Closing the Gap Between Recommended Practice and Reality for Transgender and Gender-Expansive Youth in Out-of-Home Care: http://www.lambdalegal.org/safe-havens
Information Gateway resource: Working With LGBTQ Youth and Families: https://www.childwelfare.gov/topics/systemwide/diverse-populations/lgbtq/
Canada: Child and youth advocate calls for better access to mental health care in remote communities
CBC News – April 25, 2017
Saskatchewan’s child and youth advocate is calling on the province to address a number of recommendations he says are “integral to a renewal of the child welfare system.”
Greece: The sexual exploitation of child migrants
Harvard Gazette – April 26, 2017
Closed borders, unsafe holding camps, and increasing desperation have created an “emergency within an emergency” concerning child sexual abuse and exploitation among migrants who are stalled in Greece, according to a new report by Harvard’s François-Xavier Bagnoud Center for Health and Human Rights (FXB Center).
Report: Emergency within an Emergency: The Growing Epidemic of Sexual Exploitation and Abuse of Migrant Children in Greece: https://cdn2.sph.harvard.edu/wp-content/uploads/sites/5/2017/04/Emergency-Within-an-Emergency-FXB.pdf
Guatemala: Fairy godmother or child trafficker? An American woman stands trial in Guatemala.
PRI: World – April 26, 2017
A controversial child trafficking trial starts this Thursday for a 64-year-old American woman who throughout the late 1990s and early 2000s placed hundreds of Guatemalan children with American families. If convicted, she could face more than a decade in prison.
AL: State Legislature Voted To Let Adoption Agencies Turn Away LGBT Parents
BuzzFeed – April 25, 2017
The Alabama legislature approved a bill on Tuesday to protect adoption and foster care agencies that refuse a service based their religious beliefs, joining a body of conservative states that have countered growing rights for LGBT people with so-called religious freedom laws.
KS: Sunflower’s EEC offers services to preemies and their families
Great Bend Tribune – April 25, 2017
“Premature births can sometimes result in developmental delays during the first two years of life,” Phillips said. “Charlie and Judah are thriving as they meet developmental milestones with the support of our multi-disciplinary team. In addition to helping with their motor skills, we share nutritional expertise so the twins continue to maintain healthy weights.”
KY: Pulaski Rep heading up adoption task force
Commonwealth Journal – April 25, 2017
Meade is the state representative for House District 80, which covers Lincoln County and a large section of northern Pulaski County, such as Eubank. The Republican Meade is also now the co-chair of the Adoption Work Group, a task force formed by the new GOP power structure in Frankfort to look at adoption and foster care with the aim of making them more participant-friendly, less complicated.
MT: Bullock Signs Bill Creating Commission on Child Abuse
Associated Press – April 25, 2017
The new commission would examine child abuse cases to better understand the causes, particularly in cases that result in death. The bill was sponsored by Democratic Rep. Kathy Kelker of Billings. The commission would be comprised of members appointed by the governor and Attorney General Tim Fox.
NY: A staggering number of NYC public school kids are homeless
New York Post – April 25, 2017
The number of homeless kids enrolled in city schools last year rose by 15 percent from 2013-2014, according to an analysis by the city’s Independent Budget Office. The IBO found that there were roughly 33,000 kids who spent at least some time at a shelter enrolled in city public schools last year, up 4,000 from the prior year.
OH: State to add $170 million in funds to fight heroin epidemic
ABC6 – April 25, 2017
Roughly $130 million of the additional $170 million in the budget proposal will pay for transitional housing, support for family members caring for the children of addicts and funding for child protective services.
Also: How the state would use additional $171 million to fight drugs (Video): http://www.dispatch.com/news/20170426/how-ohio-house-wants-to-spend-additional-171-million-to-fight-drugs
OR: State to pay $300,000 to settle lawsuit alleging sexual abuse by foster parent
Oregonian – April 25, 2017
The state has agreed to pay $300,000 to settle a federal lawsuit brought by the guardians of two girls who said a foster parent sexually abused the children.
PA: ‘Horrified’ Council members call for reforms, cancellation of Wordsworth contracts
Philadelphia Inquirer – April 25, 2017
Nine members of Philadelphia City Council on Tuesday called for sweeping reforms in oversight of the city’s child welfare system, saying it had failed to protect scores of vulnerable children.
PA: Bartolotta’s postpartum depression bill moves along in state Senate
Times – April 25, 2017
State Sen. Camera Bartolotta’s effort to have newborns and infants whose mothers are affected by postpartum depression be eligible for early-intervention services took a step forward Tuesday as her co-sponsored legislation was moved out of committee.
TX: CPS says it is working on new ways to combat child abuse
San Antonio Express-News – April 25, 2017
While the rate of child victims of abuse or neglect declined somewhat in Bexar County last year, the rate of children removed from their homes for such maltreatment increased, with more than 1,900 kids being taken from their parents by the state.
Also: There’s progress on a better child welfare system (Opinion): http://www.star-telegram.com/opinion/editorials/article146746349.html
Also: TEXAS VIEW: CPS hits just keep on coming (Opinion): http://www.oaoa.com/editorial/views/texas_opinion/article_a079fc0e-29d2-11e7-bd3f-030a434de56e.html
TX: Panel in Amarillo says answers to child abuse must be community-driven
Amarillo Globe News – April 25, 2017
Child abuse and neglect is 60 percent higher in Amarillo than the state average.
VA: Special grand jury says no charges in Rockbridge social services investigation
Martinsville Bulletin – April 25, 2017
Late last summer, Billias took the rare step of asking a Circuit Court judge to impanel the grand jury after an internal social services review found a raft of problems at the agency – including allegations that some reports of child abuse received lackluster attention or were ignored altogether.
WI: Filling the Needs of Forgotten Youth
Shepherd Express – April 25, 2017
More recently they have upped their efforts by starting Courage Milwaukee, a non-profit whose mission is raise funds and awareness for LGBTQ+ youth to ensure they have the skills, tools and resources needed to grow into successful leaders throughout the community.
US: From Denial to Desperation: Misrepresentations on Child Welfare and Race (Opinion)
Chronicle of Social Change – April 25, 2017
This is a classic example of what can best be called inference peddling. Cohen wants us to infer that there is now so much evidence that racial bias is no problem in child welfare that people who once said there was such a problem have given up and gone away.
Original article: Author Ties ‘Whupping’ of Black Kids to the Days of Slavery in ‘Spare the Kids’: https://chronicleofsocialchange.org/blogger-co-op/author-ties-whupping-black-kids-days-slavery-spare-kids/25930
US: Prevention of abuse, neglect is possible (Opinion)
Daily Item – April 25, 2017
Mary Ellen was brought into the courtroom on a stretcher and through the auspices of the SPCA had her day in court. The SPCA made its point in court. Mary Ellen was removed from the quagmire that had been her living nightmare. In 1875, a new society was formed: The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children.
Also: Information Gateway resource: National Child Abuse Prevention Month 2017: https://www.childwelfare.gov/topics/preventing/preventionmonth/
US: States Investing the Most and Least in Children (Includes video)
24/7 Wall St – April 25, 2017
Most Americans agree that it is important to provide children with ample opportunities for success, regardless of where they live. To this end, state and local government budgets include provisions for children’s basic education, health care, social services, and other support programs.
Also: Report: Unequal Playing Field? State Differences in Spending on Children in 2013: http://www.urban.org/sites/default/files/publication/89881/unequal_playing_field_0.pdf
US: Western States Face Spikes in Drug Use, Foster Care
Chronicle of Social Change – April 25, 2017
The terrifying uptick in opiate use and overdoses, and the continued pervasive use of methamphetamines, is largely the province of American adults. And now, national data suggests that the growing rate of dangerous drug use is fueling a growing reliance on foster care in America.
Ireland: Number of homeless children reaches record high
Irish Times – April 25, 2017
The numbers of homeless children in Dublin, and nationally, are now at their highest rate since records began.
AL: LGBT families under attack: Alabama law would make it legal to stop same-sex couples from adopting
Salon – April 24, 2017
Sponsored by two Republicans, Rep. Rich Wingo and Sen. Bill Hightower, the legislation would “prohibit the state from discriminating against child placing agencies on the basis that the provider declines to provide a child placement that conflicts with the religious beliefs of the provider.” Thus, the government would be blocked from revoking the license of an adoption and foster care center if it were to turn down a same-sex couple’s application to become parents.
Also: Baptist pastor says faith-based adoption agencies shouldn’t discriminate against gays: https://baptistnews.com/article/baptist-pastor-says-faith-based-adoption-agencies-shouldnt-discriminate-gays/#.WP85Q9y1sdU
CA: Fresno superior court gets grant to create juvenile human trafficking court
Fresno Bee – April 25, 2017
The Judicial Council of California awarded the Fresno County Superior Court a three-year, $383,651 grant to plan and implement a juvenile human trafficking court. The grant will go towards providing restorative treatment and support services for trafficked youth who come into contact with the juvenile justice and child welfare systems.
CA: Foster Mom Mentors Her Resource Parent Peers (Press release)
PR Log – April 24, 2017
The Peer Partner Educator Program that Thiele joined is new, launched in late 2016, as a kind of “been there, done that” mentorship program for experienced foster parents such as Thiele to provide a web of support in the form of phone calls, in-person mentoring, resource referrals and group support meetings for licensed Ventura County foster parents.
FL: Want to prevent child abuse? Start with strengthening families | Opinion
Sun Sentinel – April 24, 2017
April is recognized in Florida and throughout the nation as National Child Abuse Prevention Month. Governor Rick and first lady Scott, state legislators, community leaders, child welfare professionals and child advocates participate in activities and outreach to share the message that everyone plays a role in preventing child abuse and neglect.
FL: Susie Bowie and Teri A Hansen: Opioid epidemic fuels foster-care crisis
Southwest Florida Herald Tribune – April 23, 2017
The foster-care system is increasingly overwhelmed as parents are overdosing or becoming incarcerated or engrossed in other aspects of the crisis. We cannot afford to wait until widespread addiction issues are solved before getting to some immediate results for children.
GA: Turning adoption efforts into political sausage (Opinion)
Macon Telegraph – April 24, 2017
Georgia’s adoption laws are antiquated and in serious need of updating. The last time the state code was updated was in 1990, due mainly to the efforts of a state senator by the name of Nathan Deal. There are currently 12,000 foster children in Georgia. The average time for foster care adoption in our state is a bit more than two-and-a-half years. Nationally, the figure is just over a year. Many Georgia families go out-of-state to adopt because it is easier.
ID: Child neglect, abuse, drug culture overwhelm Idaho’s foster system
Post Register – April 22, 2017
Idaho needs a foster care system for Josiah and other neglected, abused or abandoned children. But it’s an overburdened system with a shortage of foster parents, overworked social workers, a lack of systemwide oversight and a culture “undercut by a constant feeling of crisis,” according to a February report by the Legislature’s Office of Performance Evaluations.
KS: Rice County officials call on public for help following jump in child abuse reports
Atchison Globe Now – April 24, 2017
With April being Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention Month, officials statewide are seeking solutions for the 39,500 reports of child abuse or neglect last year, a 25 percent increase. Of those, 16,400 were part of child maltreatment investigations, which is a 43 percent increase from 2015.
MO: Bill Would Raise Minimum Age of MO Juveniles Sent to Adult Prison (Includes audio)
Public News Service – April 25, 2017
Missouri is one of only seven states that treat 17-year-olds as adults in the criminal-justice system. A group called “Raise the Age Coalition” has been working to change that for several years, and members say they’re encouraged because legislation to raise the age to 18 could be heard in a House committee within the next few days.
NC: Bill to reform DSS bears watching, officials say
Daily Reflector – April 23, 2017
Instead of having 100 counties operating individual social services departments, the legislation, titled “Family/Child Protection & Accountability Act,” wants to establish 30 regional agencies to provide administrative services “but preserves a physical presence for delivery of social services in every county served by the region.”
NC: Pierce wants NC study on homelessness
Robesonian – April 22, 2017
Pierce has introduced House Bill 647 that he hopes will have a hearing before the House Committee on Homelessness, Dependency and Foster Care sometime this week. A hearing on the bill had been scheduled for last week, but it was postponed after two other bills took up all of the committee’s meeting time.
ND: DHS releases home alone guidlines for children (Includes video)
KFYRTV – April 24, 2017
Parents who can’t send their child to camp or daycare may find themselves in a bind this summer. Eventually asking, “Is my child ready to be left home alone?” The answer may seem complicated.
NH: Lawmakers propose big investment in mental health, DCYF
Union Leader – April 22, 2017
A bill that initially only required the Department of Health and Human Services to develop a 10-year plan for the state’s mental health system is about to become the vehicle for a multimillion-dollar overhaul of New Hampshire’s mental health and child protection services.
TX: Foster Programs Consistently Seeing Drug-Addicted Newborns (Includes video)
My High Plains – April 24, 2017
Thousands of kids in the state of Texas are waiting for foster parents, some children in the panhandle are being born with drugs in their system. Panhandle Orphan Care Network Executive Director Matt Darrah says foster organizations are seeing several newborns addicted to drugs.
TX: CPS situation in Amarillo better than across Texas
Amarillo Globe News – April 23, 2017
While the number of children sleeping in Child Protective Services offices or other temporary lodging doubled across the state, that was not the case in Amarillo. “The beautiful thing about Amarillo is that up until Friday (a week ago), we had two different places that allowed us to bring our kids so we didn’t have to keep them in offices,” said Shawn Vandygriff, CPS Region 1 director.
TX: How to save Texas money: McClure (Opinion)
El Paso Times – April 22, 2017
April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month. But ironically, it was earlier this month that Texas lawmakers overlooked an opportunity to expand two very effective means of preventing child maltreatment – opportunities that would have saved the state a lot of pennies for tomorrow. Billions, in fact.
US: Indian Child Welfare Act: One Family’s Journey Along the Adoption Trail
Indian Country Today – April 24, 2017
The Indian Child Welfare Act has taken a beating in the mainstream press lately. It is often portrayed as an obscure, frivolous law of ill-service to the many mixed race Indian children living off the reservation. Like many things in our world, Indian culture and families have changed. They no longer resemble (not that they ever did) the television fueled mainstream vision of Indian life. In fact, 60 percent of Native families are like ours, they live off the reservation.
US: Report: States lack protections for transgender youth
Associated Press – April 24, 2017
Most states lack anti-discrimination policies and staff training needed to protect transgender youth in foster care, juvenile detention facilities and homeless shelters, according to a new report.
Report Announcement: Nearly All Fifty States are Failing Transgender, Gender-Expansive and Gender-Nonconforming (TGNC) Youth: http://www.childrensrights.org/press-release/report-nearly-all-fifty-states-are-failing-transgender-gender-expansive-and-gender-nonconforming-tgnc-youth/
Also: Republicans in Congress push for religious liberty executive order: https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2017/04/24/republicans-congress-push-religious-liberty-executive-order/100842590/
US: Richard Gelles Argues for a Child-Centered Approach to Child Welfare
Chronicle of Social Change – April 24, 2017
Gelles asserts that governments respond to horrific deaths like Daniael’s by “rounding up the usual suspects.” These include adding money, staff and training; firing the commissioner; forming a blue-ribbon panel; and even changing the name of the agency. Advocates for children often respond by filing class action lawsuits, which result in court receiverships that often fail to achieve significant changes for children. In the rest of the book, Gelles lays out his own blueprint for system reform that “eschews the normal calls for more money, more staff, more training, and more lawsuits.
Information Gateway resource: Protective Factors to Promote Well-Being: https://www.childwelfare.gov/topics/preventing/promoting/protectfactors/
US: Studies find 1 in 5 homeless Atlanta youth are victims of human trafficking
Chicago Defender – April 24, 2017
Researchers announced findings today from the largest-ever combined sample of homeless youth in the United States and Canada, revealing that nearly one-fifth are victims of human trafficking, including those trafficked for sex, labor, or both. Homeless youth in Atlanta were among those surveyed for the study, and the local finding echoed the national results: of the 64 young people interviewed, 20.3 percent were trafficked for sex, labor, or both.
US: When a child has no lunch money, whose problem is it?
Christian Science Monitor – April 24, 2017
In New Mexico it was Sen. Michael Padilla (D) – who said that as a hungry foster child he had experienced first-hand the pain of lunch shaming – who introduced the Hunger-Free Students’ Bill of Rights. The bill was passed by the New Mexico state legislature last week. Other lawmakers nationwide have reached out to him for guidance on how they can end lunch shaming in their own states, Senator Padilla told NPR. California and Texas have tabled similar bills, and by July 1, 2017, the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) will require every school district to have a written policy that clearly communicates to staff and parents how schools will deal with children whose parents have not paid their lunch bills.
Also: Do You Want to Offer School Meals At No Cost to All Students?: http://blog.nassp.org/2017/04/24/do-you-want-to-offer-school-meals-at-no-cost-to-all-students/
US: Hoeven Examines Implementation of the Native American Children’s Safety Act of 2016 (Press release)
United States Senate Committee on Indian Affairs – April 21, 2017
“Today we have an opportunity to forge a path forward for the young people in this community,” Hoeven said. “Native youth are 2.5 times more likely to experience incidents involving child abuse or neglect than children of any other race or ethnicity. It is also deeply troubling that a child’s placement in foster care can lead to further involvement in the juvenile and criminal justice systems later in life. We need to break this vicious cycle for Native youth.”
Canada: Ontario urged to track foster kids after they leave care
Toronto Star – April 25, 2017
New report urges Ontario to study youth over time after they leave the care of children’s aid, to track problems they face and suggest ways to improve the system.
Kenya: Adoption process difficult because human lives are involved – Oguntoyinbo
Sun – April 25, 2017
Mrs. Aderonke Oguntoyinbo is the matron in charge of Lions’ Motherless Babies Home, Lekki, Lagos. The home, jointly owned by Lions Club International and the Lagos State Ministry of Youth and Sports, has about 100 children at present. However, children are adopted from time to time. In this interview with Daily Sun, recently in Lekki, Oguntoyinbo speaks on the basic requirements for adoption, legalisation and why the process is seemingly difficult, especially in Lagos State.
AR: Non-profit in Rogers supports young women aging out of foster care
Talk Business & Politics – April 21, 2017
Aging out of foster care without a permanent home is the highest-risk outcome for a foster youth. Twenty-five percent of these youth report that they became homeless within two to four years of exiting foster care, according to the national organization CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) for Children.
Information Gateway resource: Extending Out-of-Home Care for Youth Past Age 18: https://www.childwelfare.gov/topics/outofhome/independent/outofhomecare/
CA: East County Homelessness Increases 7% — and Nearly All Are Unsheltered
East Country Magazine – April 23, 2017
The annual count of San Diego County’s homeless population found 9,116 people living on the streets or in shelters, a 5 percent increase from last year countywide. Results were released Thursday from the Point-in-Time Count held in the early morning hours of January 27th. The effort is organized by the Regional Task Force on the Homeless.
CA: Yolo Crisis Nursery: Mom’s tale goes to heart of why nursery exists
Davis Enterprise – April 23, 2017
“This family really illustrates why we exist,” Sleuter says. “If a parent’s problems keep escalating, our goal is to intervene and de-escalate the crisis, providing support so the family can remain intact and the kids suffer as little trauma as much as possible.”
FL: State Inspires National Model for Juvenile-Detention Reform (Includes audio)
Public News Service – April 24, 2017
The Annie E. Casey Foundation’s Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative launched in 1987 in Broward County, and just five years later had reduced the detention population by 65 percent without affecting public safety.
Also: Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative (JDAI): http://www.djj.state.fl.us/research/latest-initiatives/juvenile-detention-alternatives-initiative-(jdai)
FL: Abramowitz: Help Guardians ad Litem help children
Southwest Florida Herald Tribune – April 23, 2017
I recently had the honor of meeting a Guardian ad Litem volunteer who had made a trip, four hours in each direction, so that a child in foster care was able to visit her sister. I hear stories like this regularly as statewide director of the GAL Program and, while I am always humbled and amazed, I am no longer surprised.
FL: Game plan for mental health sought
Panama City News Herald – April 21, 2017
Ann Wing, network coordinator with Big Bend Community Based Care, which handles child welfare, substance abuse and mental health services for families, said the Bay County Sheriff’s Office at any given time is treating about 200 people in the jail with mental health and substance abuse issues. She said of the approximate 1,000 people in the jail, almost half have gone through agencies with which Bed Bend subcontracts for services.
FL: Goal of state’s new child welfare plan: more help for investigators and more foster parents
Tampa Bay Times – April 21, 2017
The critical decision to remove a child from a home because of abuse or neglect is based on the work of child welfare investigators. But about 80 percent of Florida’s investigators have less than two year’s experience. And more than half are juggling heavy case loads. Fixing those problems is one focus of a new attempt to improve Florida’s child welfare system.
FL: State Uses Data-Driven Approaches to Improve Outcomes for Youth
Pew Charitable Trusts – April 19, 2017
The Florida Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ) is no stranger to use of data-driven approaches to improve government efficiency. In 2012, the DJJ developed its “Roadmap to System Excellence,” which advances the use of data to inform decisions that enhance outcomes for the state’s youth. Evidence-based programming is at the center of this endeavor.
Also: Report: http://www.pewtrusts.org/
GA: Preventing child abuse: Where to find help, other resources in Northwest Georgia
Hometown Headlines – April 24, 2017
This is the final part of a series of articles in April about Child Abuse Prevention Month authored by Kaitlyn Bailey, a school worker with Floyd County.
ID: Severe shortage: Idaho foster parents quit almost as fast as they’re recruited
Twin Falls Times-News – April 23, 2017
Prospective foster parents must complete a months-long process to become licensed. They must face whatever problems the children bring from situations of abuse or neglect – burns, violent outbursts, distrust. And they often feel overwhelmed, asked to take on more and more children. “We are overburdening foster parents,” Baca said, “and that makes it difficult.”
KY: Inspired by own family, Kentucky gov. tackles foster system
Associated Press – April 24, 2017
Now Bevin’s in charge of the system he says failed them and the girl, an experience shaping one of his most ambitious initiatives: an overhaul of Kentucky’s child-welfare system.
MA: ‘Unacceptable’: Police Chief Says DCF Prevented Investigators From Speaking to Witness About Missing Teen
NECN – April 21, 2017
Methuen police Chief Joseph E. Solomon called the Department of Children and Families’ refusal to let his investigators interview the 15-year-old about Jessica Jimenez’s whereabouts “unacceptable” on Friday morning.
MI: Volunteers help foster children in family court
Traverse City Record-Eagle – April 24, 2017
Brenda Knaack has been retired for years, but the time she spends volunteering for Grand Traverse County Probate and Family Court rivals that of a full-time job. Knaack is one of roughly 50 local court appointed special advocates charged with voicing the foster child’s best interest in family court. It’s her job to be the judge’s eyes and ears for one case at a time, a time commitment of several hours per week that typically lasts upward of a year.
MI: Local child well-being rates among state’s lowest
Ludington Daily News – April 23, 2017
Three of the four local counties ranked among Michigan’s lowest as far as child welfare is concerned, with the fourth county ranked near the middle even though about 27 percent were living below the poverty line.
MI: Two more arrested in Michigan in first FGM prosecution in US
BBC News – April 21, 2017
A Michigan doctor and his wife have been arrested in connection with the first ever prosecution for female genital mutilation (FGM) in the US.
MN: Hospital confronts dilemma of opioid addicts who are expectant moms
Minneapolis Star Tribune – April 23, 2017
Few things have been as heart-wrenching for obstetrics doctors and nurses at Sanford Bemidji Medical Center in recent years as helpless newborns hooked on the opioid drugs their mothers abused during or before pregnancy.
MS: State ranks last in child welfare, foster system struggles
Daily Mississippian – April 21, 2017
Children across the country face hardships when it comes to opportunity and living situations, but Mississippi children may have it worse than most. According to a new study released by the Annie E. Casey Foundation Kids Count Data Center, Mississippi ranks last among all U.S. states in overall child-welfare.
Also: Mississippi Kids Count 2016: http://www.aecf.org/m/databook/2016KC_profiles_MS.pdf
NC: Number Of Kids In NC Foster Care System Spiked In 2016
WUNC – April 21, 2017
In North Carolina, more kids are aging out of the foster care system without permanent families. That number has been on the rise for more than a decade, but it spiked again last year.
NJ: City-run shelter could address homeless hotspots in Newark
New Jersey Online – April 23, 2017
The space will be for those often turned away at other shelters, like LGBT residents unwelcome at home, teenagers aging out of foster care or the newly homeless that don’t receive welfare yet, to qualify for some beds. The intake center will help direct homeless people to services that can help get them off the street.
NJ: Dept. of Children and Families Commissioner Proud of Progress (Includess video)
NJTV – April 21, 2017
Congratulations from Gov. Chris Christie for the state Department of Children and Families. Placed under a federal court monitor following a tragic death a decade ago. The federal monitor now says the state child welfare agency has achieved 20 of 36 goals.
NY: Erie County Department of Social Services Launches Yearlong Foster Care Initiative with Permanency Summit (Press release)
Erie County, NY – April 21, 2017
‘Foster care is not meant to be a permanent placement for children,’ said Erie County Executive Mark C. Poloncarz. ‘Our community must work collaboratively to find a permanent family for each child in Erie County.
OH: State ads $1 million to START program for local counties
Ledger Independent – April 23, 2017
Just a month after announcing a program to help children in families impacted by drug abuse, Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine announced expansion of the START program to include Adams County and Brown County.
OH: Helping homeless kids find shelter (Opinion)
Wellington Enterprise – April 21, 2017
Homelessness is dangerous, especially for kids. They are more vulnerable to become victims of crime, they’re more vulnerable to disease, and they’re more likely to become victims of human trafficking. Homeless kids do worse in school than their peers and they have a harder time developing social skills. These effects of homelessness can last a lifetime.
OR: Bill could make graduation easier for kids experiencing hardships
KOBI5 – April 21, 2017
Legislation that could make it easier for homeless and foster youth to graduate high school soared through the Oregon House in a unanimous vote Thursday.
OR: What Rights Do Foster Children Have?
Statesman Journal – April 20, 2017
You have the right to be free from corporal punishment, pain, humiliation and ridicule. You have the right to not be locked in a room or tied up. These are a few of the points on Oregon’s Foster Care Bill of Rights, which is required to be hung in plain sight in every foster home.
PA: Recommendations to End Youth Homelessness (Requires free registration)
Legal Intelligencer – April 21, 2017
In the last few years Philadelphia has seen an increase in the numbers of homeless youth. We aren’t alone-this increase is happening in cities nationwide. According to a Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) report, 5,764 children and youth were counted as homeless in Philadelphia during the 2014-2015 school year.
SC: Bill enabling foster children to obtain driver’s license to go into effect
WIS – April 21, 2017
A bill that Governor McMaster signed in early April which enables children in foster care to obtain driver’s licenses and permits goes into effect next week.
SC: State of Addiction: Helping pregnant addicts and their babies
WYFF – April 21, 2017
A counselor in drug court helped her find Serenity Place, a residential rehabilitation center for women and their children in a Greenville neighborhood. Top priority is given to women who are pregnant.
TN: After AMBER Alert, when to report potential child abuse (Includes video)
WBIR – April 21, 2017
Almost two weeks after Elizabeth Thomas disappeared in mid-March, the Maury County school district announced a task force to review its parent notification system. The district says it will look at policies for any range of inappropriate contact between student and faculty, and look to include more checks and balances.
TX: Bill that would create more options for voluntary guardianship wins House approval
Community Impact Newspaper – April 21, 2017
A bill that would allow the state’s Department of Family and Protective Services to work with nonprofit organizations to provide services to families in crisis was passed by the state House of Representatives Thursday and will next go before the Senate.
TX: Crazy8 Ministries becomes official CarePortal for JC
Cleburne Times-Review – April 21, 2017
From cleaning supplies to storage bins to mattresses, having these household items are sometimes the determining factor whether a family in crisis can stay together. If there was no proactive intervention, these at-risk families face the danger of losing custody of their children.
TX: Is this ‘Minority Report’ or is it the Future of Child Welfare? (Opinion)
Chronicle of Social Change – April 21, 2017
Predictive analytics, mathematical equations that forecast where events will likely occur, and the use of data within governmental agencies such as the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) are seen by many as a way to proactively penalize people before they ever do anything wrong.
TX: Local shelter answering Governor’s call to fix foster bed shortage (Includes video)
News 4 San Antonio – April 20, 2017
The Governor’s office has asked Roy Maas to help even more foster kids. Shelter leaders are transforming The Bridge to add up to 20 new beds for foster kids by next fall, and they desperately need the community to get involved.
Also: ANOTHER VIEWPOINT: Why are kids still sleeping in CPS offices? (Opinion): http://thefacts.com/opinion/article_c41249fa-c8cb-594b-abf2-5d16afd1b2f4.html
Also: For troubled Texas foster kids, sleeping in offices is “rock bottom” : http://www.educationviews.org/troubled-texas-foster-kids-sleeping-offices-rock-bottom/
WA: New law will help foster children in school
Moscow-Pullman Daily News – April 22, 2017
Washington school districts, starting July 23, will be required to grant and consolidate partial credit and coursework to foster children forced to move from one school district to another, according to legislation signed into law by Gov. Jay Inslee this week.
US: Child Abuse Deaths Threefold Higher in Poor Communities (Requires free registration)
Medscape – April 24, 2017
A national analysis of deaths from child abuse by county has shown what many may have intuitively expected: A higher concentration of poverty is consistently associated with higher rates of fatalities.
US: The Trafficking Targets (Opinion)
US News & World Report – April 21, 2017
Researchers on Monday released the most comprehensive findings to date on the prevalence of human trafficking among homeless youth in the United States and Canada, reporting that 1 in 5 have been the victims of human trafficking – involving either the sale of minors for sex, or compelling sex or labor from victims through the use of force, fraud or coercion.
US: Why America’s Babies Are Suffering Opioid Addictions, Placing More Babies In Foster Care
Huffington Post – April 20, 2017
The newborn baby was going through withdrawal from drugs – drugs transmitted by her mother during pregnancy. Known as neonatal abstinence syndrome, or NAS, these withdrawal symptoms can take the form of seizures, elevated heart and respiratory rate, difficulty in sleeping and eating, and extreme bouts of irritability, and even problems in growth development.
Canada: CAS backs down. Strike/lockout is over
Bay Today – April 21, 2017
The end has come for a four month lockout at the Nipissing and Parry Sound Children’s Aid Society. According to a CUPE news release, “strong solidarity and enormous political pressure” caused the Society to make an eleventh-hour decision to end the labour dispute.
United Arab Emirates: Campaign raises awareness of impact of child abuse
Gulf News – April 23, 2017
An ongoing campaign by the Dubai Foundation for Women and Children (DFWAC) in April is conveying a strong message about child abuse and the impact it can have on the future psychological well-being of children.
FL: Foster care agency leaders quit amid teen suicides, other turmoil
Miami Herald – April 20, 2017
Beset by turmoil over the recent suicides of two foster children in their care – and persistent complaints that they were overly secretive and unresponsive – three of the top administrators of Miami’s Our Kids child welfare agency have resigned.
KY: KyCIR: Detention common occurance for Kentucky youth, even when they haven’t committed a crime
KYForward – April 20, 2017
Politicians, school administrators and advocates in Kentucky all agree that children shouldn’t be locked up for behavior problems. But there’s little agreement on whether or how to stop the practice.
LA: Report: homeless youth face high risk of human trafficking
Best of New Orleans – April 19, 2017
Nearly one in five young people experiencing homelessness were the victims of human trafficking, according to a report from Loyola University New Orleans’ Modern Slavery Research Project. The project team interviewed 641 “homeless and runaway youth” between ages 17-24 who had received care from Covenant House shelters, transitional living centers, apartment programs and drop-in centers at 10 North American cities, including New Orleans.
Report: Labor and Sex Trafficking Among Homeless Youth: http://media.wix.com/ugd/73f135_20128a9e064d45f29c3cfcd98ea11d1e.pdf
Also: Human trafficking numbers rise in Louisiana: http://www.arklatexhomepage.com/news/local-news/human-trafficking-numbers-rise-in-louisiana/694614496
MO: U.S. Supreme Court Hears Big Missouri Church-State Case (Press release)
Pew Charitable Trust – April 19, 2017
Although many states have Blaine Amendments, many also fund or rely on programs with some sort of religious ties, including school voucher programs, shelters for the homeless and domestic abuse victims, child care centers, and foster care programs. Groups that submitted friend-of-the-court briefs on behalf of the church, including many states, worry a ruling in favor of Missouri could jeopardize such programs. Lower courts, however, have largely upheld Missouri’s position.
MT: CASA program helps children navigate legal system
Char-Koosta News – April 20, 2017
In recent years, Child Protective Service referrals have taxed resources and staff. Attorneys who handle these cases hardly have time to thoroughly monitor compliance with court orders let alone settle what is the child’s best interest. With many cases moving through the court system, the process to protect children could also lose them in the child welfare system.
NC: Advocates: Threats of Deportation Reducing Reports of Domestic Violence (Includes audio)
Public News Service – April 21, 2017
There are reports of increased reluctance among undocumented immigrants in North Carolina and the rest of the country to report crimes such as domestic violence, for fear of deportation of themselves or their abuser.
NC: Bill would toughen rules for parent-child reunification
Associated Press – April 20, 2017
The bill known as Rylan’s law would require that social workers observe two successful visits and document those visits for a judge before children and parents are reunited. Such visits are considered best practice in North Carolina but aren’t required.
Also: ‘Rylan’s Law’ advances in NC House (Includes video): http://wncn.com/2017/04/20/nc-lawmakers-to-discuss-rylans-law-in-house-committee-today/
Also: Information Gateway Resource: Family Reunification: What the Evidence Shows: https://www.childwelfare.gov/pubs/issue-briefs/family-reunification/
NC: UNC Horizons substance-abuse treatment program opens base in Carrboro
Herald Sun – April 19, 2017
The new North Greensboro Street facility will host the UNC Horizons, a 24-year-old program for “pregnant or parenting women” and their children.
NY: EXCLUSIVE: Advocates urge de Blasio to reinstate $10.3M in city budget to provide crucial services for homeless kids
New York Daily News – April 19, 2017
Mayor de Blasio must restore $10.3 million to the upcoming city budget for critical services for homeless kids, advocates and families insist. The money would be used to continue funding social workers for homeless kids in public schools, literacy programs in shelters and enrollment workshops for homeless families, among other things.
NY: Man hired to audit Administration for Children’s Services axed for reporting ‘shady’ systemic issues: lawsuit
New York Daily News – April 19, 2017
A man hired to audit and evaluate the Administration for Children’s Services was fired for flagging systemic problems at the trouble-plagued agency, according to a new lawsuit filed against the city on Tuesday. Architect Adam Wapniak claims he was let go after discovering “shady payment practices, favoritism in the execution of contracts, failure or neglect to hold contractors accountable for meeting budgets or schedules.”
OH: DeWine would require opioid education as governor
Lancaster Eagle-Gazette – April 19, 2017
If there’s no required education on addiction for students in kindergarten through twelfth grade by January 2018, Attorney General Mike DeWine said he would make it mandatory if he’s governor. Since about half of the children in foster care throughout the state are there because one or both parents are addicted to drugs, DeWine announced a program in March to help those families.
OK: Gov. Fallin, DHS Announce Statewide Foster Care Call to Action Day (Press release)
Office of the Governor of the State of Oklahoma – April 20, 2017
Governor Mary Fallin and the Oklahoma Department of Human Services launched the Oklahoma Fosters initiative in November 2015 and surpassed its goal of recruiting more than 1,000 new foster families in state fiscal year 2016 to better serve children in state custody.. The goal for this year is to recruit 1,080 new foster families by June 30. The state has reached 70 percent of that goal.
PA: Charter reform law voted out of House committee, more revisions likely
The Notebook (Philadephia Public School System) – April 18, 2017
The letter points out that the new bill does nothing the address issues of inequity that could arise between charters and its public school district. “Any matrix should include criteria that evaluates, relative to the authorizing school district, how equitably a charter school serves students in poverty, students with the full range of disabilities, English Learner students, and students experiencing homelessness and foster care.”
TN: Baptists partner with Tenn. foster care system
Baptist Press – April 20, 2017
Tennessee’s Department of Children’s Services has found a valuable partner to help improve the state’s foster care system: faith-based organizations like the Tennessee Baptist Children’s Homes. Since December, TBCH has participated in a collaboration of government and the private sector to encourage foster parenting.
TX: Huber family hopes new bill will stop wrongful child abuse allegations
Courier of Montgomery County – April 19, 2017
A misdiagnosed medical condition which resulted in Andrew Huber being wrongfully accused of abusing his then-infant daughter Kenley gained the Huber family public attention in 2013. Now, almost five years later, the Hubers are working with a congresswoman to ensure no other family is separated due to misinformation.
WI: Women Are Treated Shamefully Under Wisconsin’s “Cocaine Mom” Law (Opinion)
Huffington Post – April 13, 2017
Twenty years ago, the Wisconsin Legislature passed Act 292, also referred to by some as the “Cocaine Mom” law, which gave the state tremendous power over pregnant women who use or have admitted to past use of any amount of alcohol or a controlled substance. The law permits the state to deprive pregnant women of basic rights and take action that is known to undermine maternal, fetal, and child health.
WV: ‘Emmaleigh’s Law’ Signed by Governor, Would Increase Child Abuse Penalties (Video)
WOWK – April 19, 2017
‘Emmaleigh’s Law’, also known as Senate Bill 288, increases the penalties for crimes of child abuse causing death by parent, guardian, custodian or other person in West Virginia has been signed into law by West Virginia Governor Jim Justice.
WV: Guest editorial (Huntington): Sharper focus on drug prevention needed
Herald-Dispatch – April 19, 2017
Trauma and other problems during childhood are certainly part of the problem, researchers say, and summit participants will hear about the risks those troubles create. Speakers also will discuss a technique called SBIRT (Screening, Brief Intervention and Referral to Treatment), which is an evidence-based way of screening someone for substance abuse.
US: Cherokee Nation sues drug firms, retailers for flooding communities with opioids
Washington Post – April 20, 2017
“We have a generation of children who are living in chaos,” said Nikki Baker-Limore, executive director of child welfare for the Cherokee Nation. “The children are our tribe’s future, and without them, we can’t go on. This just isn’t fair.”
US: Congresswoman pushing for more education on human trafficking (Includes video)
KMOV – April 19, 2017
Congresswoman Ann Wagner is pushing for more education when it comes to human trafficking. She said the St. Louis area is in the top 20 locations in the country for human trafficking. Victims of human trafficking are often used for sexual exploitation.
US: In a Class of 20 Teen Girls, Six Have Been Sexually Assaulted, New Study Finds
Broadly – April 19, 2017
According to an extensive report released today by the National Women’s Law Center (NWLC), teenage girls face a number of barriers to getting a quality education. The survey, titled Let Her Learn: Stopping School Pushout, aims to take a closer look at what girls with varying identities and experiences face in school on a daily basis.
Report: Stopping School Pushout: Overview and Key Findings: https://nwlc.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/Final_nwlc_Gates_OverviewKeyFindings.pdf
US: Juvenile Detention Facilities Are A Special Kind Of Hell For Queer Youth
Logo – April 19, 2017
LGB youth who endure rape and abuse will carry those scars with them for the rest of their lives. And, when they get out, many find themselves in a foster care system or homeless-both environments where LGBT people are highly overrepresented, and where the patterns of victimization, trauma, and substance abuse are likely to be perpetuated.
Report: Disproportionality and Disparities Among Sexual Minority Youth in Custody: https://williamsinstitute.law.ucla.edu/research/safe-schools-and-youth/lgbtq-youth-disproportionately-incarcerated-in-the-u-s-juvenile-justice-system/
Canada: Parents who smoke pot
Today’s Parent – April 20, 2017
Here’s a look at the ways Canadian parents use cannabis and whether the stigma really is fading.
United Kingdom: New research shows victims of child sexual abuse within families face differential access to support with many failing to receive the help they need (Press release)
Commissioner for Children – April 20, 2017
New research shows victims of child sexual abuse within families face differential access to support with many failing to receive the help they need Professionals often failing to pick up signs of abuse, leaving many victims having to seek help themselves.
Report: Making life better for children and young people in England: http://www.childrenscommissioner.gov.uk/publications?field_publicaton_category_tid=5
United Kingdom: Joint inspections to focus on child neglect
Community Care – April 19, 2017
Inspectors will evaluate how risks to children living with neglect are prevented and reduced, and assess whether they are receiving the right help and protection. They will also gauge whether the impact of neglect on children is reduced by local agency involvement.
AR: Foster care numbers in Arkansas level off, official says
Northwest Arkansas Democrat Gazette – April 20, 2017
Growth in the number of children in foster care has plateaued since hitting a record high last year, the director of the Division of Children and Family Services said Wednesday.
CA: Foster care center addresses addiction
Thousand Oaks Acorn – April 20, 2017
The residential facility is now the central service provider in Ventura and Santa Barbara counties for foster children with the greatest need: teens ages 11 to 17 whose behavioral problems make it difficult to place them with relatives or foster families, said Judy Webber, deputy director of the county’s children and family services department.
CA: Foster youth programs give students a place to heal and grow
Courier (Pasadena City College) – April 19, 2017
As overwhelming as college can be, students in foster care with no family support can find an exclusive community at PCC where their different challenges share a common thread.. Scholars Transitioning and Realizing Success (STARS) and Careregivers of Foster Youth (CAFYES) are two foster youth programs that aim to serve as a safe haven for previous and current foster youth students, helping them reach their dreams, goals, and potential.
CA: Mendocino County Family and Children Services in ‘crisis’
Ukiah Daily Journal – April 19, 2017
Mendocino County’s Family and Children’s Services is in a state of crisis. That is according to an assessment by the Northern California Training Agency at UC Davis, as well as the department’s employees, who say they are overworked and receive no help in dealing with the stress and emotional burden inherent to the job.
CA: Gold Coast Health Plan, Beacon collaborate to offer mental health services for Medi-Cal members (Press release)
Gold Coast Health Plan – April 17, 2017
Since Jan. 1, 2014, Medi-Cal expansion has allowed members with a “mild to moderate” impairment – like anxiety, depression and other disorders – to access mental health care under the benefit. Gold Coast Health Plan, Ventura County’s one and only Medi-Cal plan, offers clinical and mental health services through its behavioral health benefit manager Beacon Health Options.
CT: Lawmaker tells colleagues to pay attention to federal audit of child welfare agency
Middletown Press – April 19, 2017
It was largely a public hearing about the spending cap, which is why his message in support of Connecticut’s children may have gotten lost. Senate Republican President Len Fasano, R-North Haven, made a passionate plea to the Appropriations Committee earlier this month, asking members to pay attention to a federal audit of the Department of Children and Families.
FL: Race, Journalism and Child Welfare: The Double Standards Run Deep (Opinion)
Chronicle of Social Change – April 19, 2017
Everyone – or at least everyone on the political left – would agree: Racial bias is part of every aspect of American life. Everyone, that is, except those liberals who keep insisting that one field is magically exempt: child welfare.
GU: Concerned Catholics backs archdiocese healing program
Pacific Daily News (Guam) – April 18, 2017
A group of Catholics seeking Archbishop Anthony S. Apuron’s removal and defrocking said it’s supporting a program that offers professional counseling, treatment, spiritual healing, compensation and justice to Guam clergy sex abuse victims.
Also: Lujan: Program for church sex-abuse victims ‘a scam’: https://www.postguam.com/news/local/lujan-program-for-church-sex-abuse-victims-a-scam/article_7f49304a-2423-11e7-91ca-f3984634f526.html
IN: Panelists outline youth mental health services available in the county
Lebanon Reporter – April 19, 2017
The mental health initiative is for children with complex mental or behavioral health needs, who are at risk of entering child welfare or juvenile delinquency, Clark said. Mental health wraparound services provide children who have serious emotional disturbances with access to intensive counseling intended to augment either an existing or recommended treatment plan.
KY: Bevin signs shared parenting law
CNHI News – April 19, 2017
Governor Matt Bevin recently signed a family court reform bill into law, bringing Kentucky a step closer to making shared parenting in instances of divorce the norm in the state. House Bill 492 received unanimous support in both the House (voted 97-0) and Senate (38-0) on April 10.
KY: House Speaker appoints adoption task force
Associated Press – April 19, 2017
A bipartisan group of state lawmakers will meet over the summer to craft legislation aimed at overhauling the state’s adoption and foster care system.
LA: Sex trafficking cases increased 25 percent last year
Department of Children & Family Services – April 19, 2017
Louisiana’s reported sex trafficking cases rose 25 percent last year, about half of them juveniles who were being exploited for sexual purposes, according to a Department of Children and Family Services report delivered to the Legislature last week. Nearly one-quarter of the human trafficking reports came from Orleans Parish, the report said, and 28 percent were reported in Caddo Parish.
Also: 25% increase in number of sex trafficking cases in Louisiana: http://www.louisianaradionetwork.com/blogs/25_increase_sex_trafficking_cases-la#.WPikbmeiMoc
MA: Early intervention program opens in New Bedford
South Coast Today – April 18, 2017
The program moved to New Bedford from Dartmouth, where it was part of the Schwartz Center. The city is a more central location for the approximately 600 families it serves over the course of a year. Of the 330 children enrolled now, 198 live in New Bedford, according to Lauren Meatty, the center’s director of early intervention.
MI: Southwest Michigan fares poorly in child welfare annual report (Includes video)
ABC57 – April 19, 2017
According to the Michigan League for Public Policy’s annual report, which many non-profits and health departments in Michigan use, those counties ranked as the worst for overall child well-being in the state.
NC: Time’s up: Record numbers of children are aging out of foster care to uncertain lives
News & Record – April 20, 2017
Record numbers of young people are aging out of foster care and many have no real safety net once they leave. In fact, the number of North Carolina children last year who became too old to stay in the system was the highest in more than 10 years, according to figures compiled by UNC-Chapel Hill’s Jordan Institute for Families.
Information Gateway resource: Permanency for Youth: https://www.childwelfare.gov/topics/permanency/specific/youth/
NY: A gender-wage war Cuomo fails to fight (Opinion)
New York Daily News – April 20, 2017
Human services workers are overwhelmingly women (more than 80%) and heavily women of color (44% of the total). And they are some of the lowest-paid workers in New York’s economy.
OH: Adams: 101 children in Highland County foster system
Times Gazette – April 19, 2017
Highland County Job and Family Services Director Katie Adams told county commissioners Wednesday that there are currently 101 children in the foster system in Highland County, costing the county $1.9 million annually for foster home placement.
OR: Under court order, DHS will restore in-home care services
Portland Tribune – April 20, 2017
The Oregon Department of Human Services will temporarily restore previous levels of in-home care services to people with intellectual and developmental disabilities under a court order won by plaintiffs who filed a federal lawsuit contesting recent cuts.
PA: Westmoreland leaders OK raises for grant-funded child welfare workers
Pittsburgh Tribune Review – April 19, 2017
The Westmoreland County salary board on Wednesday approved the reorganization of two departments that provide child welfare and mental health services to thousands of residents, increasing the annual payroll by more than $110,000.
TX: For troubled foster kids in Houston, sleeping in offices is “rock bottom”
Texas Tribune – April 20, 2017
No one is supposed to sleep or spend more than a few hours in this little building at the Harris County Youth Services Center, called the Point of Entry. It’s meant to be a waiting area for young children whose families are being investigated for abuse or neglect.
TX: House members balk at bill to help CPS workers connect with traumatized kids
Dallas Morning News – April 19, 2017
A little-noticed bill that proponents say could change Texas’ beleaguered child-welfare system for the better seemed headed for passage Tuesday before it hit a speed bump known as the House Freedom Caucus. After several members of the staunchly conservative group said they fear the bill might have been written to aid just one company, its author pulled the measure down.
TX: Battle looms over how quickly foster care bill outsources CPS workers’ duties
Dallas Morning News – April 18, 2017
Wichita Falls GOP Rep. James Frank said in an interview that he made some concessions to the Senate by importing elements of the senators’ main foster-care bill on prevention and foster children’s medical care. But on the key issue of changing how the state buys beds and therapies for foster children, Frank said that he wanted to keep his own bill’s approach to “community-based foster care.”
WA: A student’s ZIP code shouldn’t dictate her academic success (Opinion)
Seattle Times – April 19, 2017
How is it that our state has developed an education system that shortchanges our students who need us the most? Only 50 percent of students read and write at grade level. One in five never finishes high school. That number more than doubles for our students of color, in poverty, English language learners, foster and homeless youth, and those with special needs.
WA: Seattle U Continues to Navigate Its Role in the Homelessness Crisis
Spectator – April 19, 2017
Scarola said the combination of the affordability crisis, mental health crisis, opiate epidemic and broken foster care system is “the proverbial perfect storm” for a homelessness crisis to brew. He said he sees two different ways that the community can get involved in the effort to help: politics and institutional volunteering.
WV: YMCA hopes to open in Montgomery this summer
Register-Herald – April 20, 2017
KVC, a Kansas-based company providing foster, adoption and behavior health care, and BridgeValley Community and Technical College plans to take control of the other campus facilities this summer.
US: Student Affairs Officers as Makers of Meaning
Inside Higher Ed – April 20, 2017
The student affairs conversation increasingly includes discussion of student hunger and homelessness — realities that student affairs staffs have been dealing with for years that have moved into higher education’s collective consciousness. Nonprofits like Guardian Scholars and the Wily Network join a growing group of agencies managing the transition from foster care to the campus — they are all manifestations of the demands on campus programs and services to respond to urgent societal needs.
US: USCCB: Child Welfare Provider Inclusion Act would protect religious liberty (Opinion)
Catholic Culture – April 20, 2017
Three bishops who chair committees of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops have called for support of the Child Welfare Provider Inclusion Act of 2017 (H.R. 1881, S.811). The legislation, sponsored by Rep. Mike Kelly (R-PA) and Sen. Michael Enzi (R-WY), is designed to counter actions by Massachusetts, Illinois, California, and the District of Columbia that exclude adoption and foster care agencies from acting on the belief that marriage is the union of a man and a woman.
Canada: “Let’s bring it back to the children,” Canadian Human Rights Commission’s Annual Report to Parliament
Canada Newswire – April 19, 2017
In its newly released 2016 Annual Report to Parliament, Canada’s human rights watchdog is shining a light on how too many children in Canada are being left behind when it comes to their basic rights of dignity, safety, education and family.
France: Child refugees in northern France facing exploitation and violence on a daily basis, Unicef warns
Independent – April 19, 2017
Unaccompanied minors ‘threatened by men armed with knives and machetes’, according to report, as charities warn children are more at risk than ever following Dunkirk camp fire.
India: Workshop against child marriages
Hindu – April 19, 2017
Mr. Rajiv explained about the Child Marriage Prohibition Act, 2006 and the consequences if a minor was married. Mr. Prasad said the Girls Advocacy Alliance (GAA) was a programme designed to address the problems of adolescent girls and to avoid child trafficking, child marriages, sexual harassment and exploitation.
Ireland: Childcare for the homeless scheme will be extended
New Irish News – April 18, 2017
A scheme to provide free childcare for under fives living in emergency accommodation is to be expanded. Fifty-two families have been availing of the service since it was initiated in Dublin last year but Children’s Minister Katherine Zappone has a significant portion of the €8.25m allocated still at her disposal. As a result, the scheme is to be extended to a number of counties including Cork, Cavan, Donegal, Kildare, Kilkenny, Leitrim, Offaly, Wicklow and Clare.
AL: State legislators work to bring religious camps out of the shadows after child abuse trial
AL.com – April 18, 2017
After the high-profile child abuse convictions of workers at a religious boot camp for teens in Mobile earlier this year, state lawmakers have introduced a bill that would prevent similar facilities from operating in the shadows.
AL: State Senate Passes Anti-LGBTQ Bill; HRC Alabama Calls on Governor Ivey To Reject It (Opinion)
Human Rights Campaign (HRC) – April 18, 2017
Today, HRC denounced the Alabama State Senate and Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh for passing the anti-LGBTQ H.B. 24. HRC Alabama calls upon Governor Kay Ivey to not sign this bill, which would most harm the children in Alabama’s child welfare system. The bill, deceptively titled the “Child Placing Agency Inclusion Act,” would enshrine discrimination into Alabama law by allowing state-licensed adoption and foster care agencies to reject qualified prospective LGBTQ adoptive or foster parents based on the agency’s religious beliefs.
Also: Democrats: Adoption agency bill would allow discrimination: http://www.kpvi.com/news/national_news/democrats-adoption-agency-bill-would-allow-discrimination/article_bacd567c-d305-5592-8231-21e2f7feb983.html
AR: Laws address neglected children
Northeast Arkansas Town Crier – April 18, 2017
During the 2017 regular session, lawmakers considered numerous changes to existing law governing placement of neglected children. About a dozen were enacted. Many of the new acts set out clear legal procedures followed by attorneys for the state Children and Family Services Division, attorneys for parents both custodial and non-custodial, attorneys for other relatives of the children and attorneys for the children.
CA: A ‘Generous’ Pathway to Citizenship, Foster Care
Chronicle of Social Change – April 18, 2017
The trophies displayed on the fireplace mantle of a stately Gothic mansion represent just some of the accomplishments of the kids at Casa Libre, an emergency and long-term shelter for undocumented homeless youth in Los Angeles’ MacArthur Park neighborhood. Federico Bustamante, the shelter’s program director, doesn’t measure success in terms of college scholarships or wrestling championships, although his graduates have earned both.
CA: Editorial: A rewarding way to help a foster child
Ventura County Star – April 18, 2017
There are other, less-known ways to help a foster child, and one worthy program is reaching out to the community this week in search of volunteers. If you have 10 to 15 hours a month to give to a foster child, we urge you to consider becoming a Court Appointed Special Advocate.
CA: Social Services wants abuse to be a community conversation (Includes video)
KSEE – April 18, 2017
April is “National Child Abuse Prevention” month. Fresno County officials say 2,200 kids are currently under the court’s jurisdiction, but there is hope for those families. Zenaida Machuka helps them go through programs to get their lives back on track. “We work one on one with them, and we help them understand that child protective services does not want your kids. They want you to stay with your kids,” Machuka said.
CA: $30B proposed county budget highlights spending on homelessness, child welfare
My News LA – April 17, 2017
The spending blueprint also includes funding to hire 220 additional social workers to reduce child welfare caseloads, Chief Executive Officer Sachi Hamai told reporters.
CO: Fostering Futures helps youths find solid path
Lakewood Sentinel – April 18, 2017
Although the two teens have different dreams, they have a few things in common: They are both in foster care, and they both are involved with a new program called Fostering Futures.
HI: Critics: Safeguards added in wake of ‘Peter Boy’ case aren’t enough (Includes video)
KHNL – April 18, 2017
The state agency charged with protecting Hawaii’s children from abuse says it has made major policy changes and improvements since “Peter Boy” Kema died at the hands of his parents 20 years ago. But critics of the agency continue to challenge that claim.
IN: Protecting our children nonstop task
Seymour Tribune – April 18, 2017
The number of cases of abused and neglected children in Indiana continues to grow, and 2016 marked the fifth straight year of increases statewide. While the statistics are staggering, the individual stories are heart-wrenching. April is National Child Abuse Prevention month, and clearly more needs to be done to protect our children.
KY: 7 sobering facts about child abuse every Kentuckian should know
Lexington Herald Leader – April 18, 2017
April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month. Unfortunately for Kentucky children, reports of abuse and neglect have increased dramatically in recent years, in part because of rampant drug abuse. These numbers illustrate the problem.
Also: How Kentucky’s child-protective agency abandoned an 8-year-old girl in hell: http://www.kentucky.com/news/politics-government/article130534864.html
LA: Guest column: Foster children need help even after they mature
Advocate – April 18, 2017
As we approach National Foster Care Month in May, lawmakers – and the citizens they are accountable to – have an opportunity to stand up for youth in foster care in meaningful ways. One key strategy to do this is by funding services for foster youth as they make the transition to adulthood from age 18 to 21. While the goal of the foster care system is to reunify children with their families, each year almost 25,000 youth nationwide – and nearly 150 in Louisiana – age out of the foster care system at age 18. That means that the state, which has parented them, sets them loose and provides no safety net, much less the moral and social support that families provide their children.
MS: Organizations looking to train foster families
WLOX – April 18, 2017
The push is on to get more foster parents in South Mississippi. Two groups, 200 Million Flowers and Rescue 100, are working hard to get more people to sign up to be foster parents.
NC: Report calls for more affordable housing, better protection for children
WECT – April 18, 2017
As part of its yearly report, the Community Child Protection Team (CCPT), a charge of the New Hanover County Department of Social Services, is calling for more affordable housing and better protection for children in families dealing with substance abuse.
NE: State budget plan advances on split vote, signaling disputes to come
Omaha World-Herald – April 18, 2017
Several lawmakers have predicted a long and contentious debate when the full Legislature takes up the budget on Tuesday over issues such as a $30 million cut taken by the State Roads Department and reductions in rates paid to child welfare providers.
NM: State Leads in Supporting System-Involved Youth, Implementing ESSA
Chronicle of Social Change – April 18, 2017
After passing two new bills in January and February of this year, state legislators say New Mexico is leading the way in ensuring educational stability for students who have been affected by homelessness and the child welfare and juvenile justice systems.
Information Gateway resource: Educational Stability for Children and Youth in Foster Care: https://www.childwelfare.gov/topics/systemwide/service-array/education-services/meeting-needs/educational-stability/
NY: State to provide free legal aid to immigrants facing deportation
Daily Orange – April 18, 2017
New York state will now offer legal counsel to immigrants facing deportation as part of a $11.5 million expansion to the Liberty Defense Project. The public defender program is the first statewide universal representation program for immigrants facing deportation in the United States.
PA: Penn State gets $7.7 million grant to “raise the bar” on child abuse-related research
PennLive – April 18, 2017
The National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, an arm of the National Institutes of Health, awarded Penn State a $7.7 million grant to help create a new Center for Healthy Children.
TN: Preventing child abuse through education (Opinion)
Tennessean – April 18, 2017
April is Child Abuse/Neglect Prevention Month. I think it’s an ideal time to shine the spotlight on The Family Center, a local agency that is preventing instances of child abuse and neglect by equipping vulnerable parents through education and coaching.
TX: Groups Oppose Bills to License ICE Detention Centers for Child Care (Includes audio)
Public News Service – April 19, 2017
A coalition of groups is opposing House Bill 2225 and a companion Senate bill, which would allow federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement centers in Dilley and Karnes City to be licensed by the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services. Laura Guerra-Cardus, deputy director of the Children’s Defense Fund-Texas, said the facilities primarily house mothers and their children seeking asylum as they await court hearings.
TX: Battle looms over how quickly foster care bill outsources CPS workers’ duties
Dallas Morning News – April 18, 2017
The Texas House sponsor of the big foster-care bill signaled Monday he’s going to fight for his version of “community-based foster care,” including a slightly slower outsourcing of Child Protective Services workers’ duties.
TX: Need for foster parents continues to grow
News4 San Antonio – April 18, 2017
It’s an issue News 4 San Antonio first exposed, Texas foster children being forced to stay in state offices or other sites due to lack of placement. “They can’t be living in hotel rooms and CPS headquarters, I mean that makes no sense at all, said Rick Cooke, President of Child Advocates San Antonio.
Also: Hays County responds to Texas’ foster care ‘epidemic’: https://communityimpact.com/austin/san-marcos-buda-kyle/at-the-capitol/2017/04/18/hays-county-responds-texas-foster-care-epidemic/
Also: State struggles to meet foster care needs: http://www.click2houston.com/news/state-struggles-to-meet-foster-care-needs
VT: Opioid epidemic fuels demand for foster families (Includes video)
WCAX – April 18, 2017
DCF leaders say the epidemic has brought an unprecedented need for foster families. And while the number of young kids entering state custody is at historic levels, finding long-term homes remains an extraordinary challenge.
Costa Rica: Global studies, MAGDJ students study abroad in Costa Rica (Press release)
Multnomah University – April 18, 2017
‘Roblealto and Casa Viva are two organizations which have transitioned into a more just model of ministry with children at risk,’ she said. ‘Instead of building orphanages and perpetuating the cycle of abandonment, these organizations assist families in working through their challenges and provide foster families for children who need to temporarily live apart from their families while they do the necessary work to become healthy and whole families once again. The holistic model these organizations provide help families and children in their physical, emotional, psychological and spiritual health.’
Ireland: HIQA reports raise concerns over foster care services
News Talk – April 18, 2017
Tusla’s Dublin South Central foster care service met only one of 26 standards assessed by the health watchdog. A report, which followed an announced inspection, on Tusla’s foster service in the region outlines five significant risks. The high risk areas include – safeguarding and child protection; assessment and reviews of foster carers; and training and qualifications of staff.
AZ: Indian community attorneys argue before AZ Supreme Court to protect Indian children
Sonoran News – April 17, 2017
Attorneys for the Gila River Indian Community this morning made oral arguments before the Arizona Supreme Court in a controversial case involving which court – Arizona state Court or the Community’s Tribal Court – will be the ultimate decision-maker regarding the future of a Native American child at risk of being permanently removed from her Community.
CA: Clinton Foundation beginning to study child welfare in San Diego
San Diego Union-Tribune – April 17, 2017
The three-year effort is expected to help diagnose what the county does well to assist its most vulnerable children, where it needs improvement, and then recommend changes.
CA: L.A. County seeks to strengthen the safety net for its neediest residents with funding for the homeless, social workers and healthcare
Los Angeles Times – April 17, 2017
The total recommended budget for fiscal year 2017-2018, which begins July 1, is $30.02 billion, an increase of $137 million, or 0.5%, over last year’s budget. More than $600 million will go toward reducing and preventing homelessness, hiring new social workers, improving foster care, treating the county’s sickest patients and diverting individuals with mental illness from jail.
CA: He could have beaten his wife in Afghanistan, but here she fought back. And lost her kids (Includes video)
Sacramento Bee – April 16, 2017
The fighting escalated. The next day, she called 911 for help. She didn’t know how to get a restraining order against her husband. She didn’t know her case would be turned over to Sacramento County Child Protective Services. She didn’t know she would lose the custody of her children.
IL: The Guardian Center, sheriff aim to make Saline County Courthouse comfortable for child victims
Southern Illinoisan – April 18, 2017
Saline County has a history of prosecuting child abuse and neglect cases to the fullest extent of the law. “Historically, Saline County has been very aggressive in prosecuting child abuse; they are a model for other counties,” Sheryl Woodham of The Guardian Center said. However, the Saline County Courthouse was not set up to accommodate young victims who had to testify in those cases.
Information Gateway resource: Child Witnesses to Domestic Violence: https://www.childwelfare.gov/pubPDFs/witnessdv.pdf
NC: Board names Catawba County Social Services director
Hickory Record – April 18, 2017
The Catawba County Social Services Board has named Karen Harrington director of Catawba County Social Services. Harrington, who joined Social Services as assistant director in 2013, has been serving as interim director of the agency since Jan. 10.
NC: GUEST VIEWPOINT: Preventing child abuse is community responsibility
Statesville Record & Landmark – April 15, 2017
April is Child Abuse Prevention Awareness Month. This month we encourage our community to celebrate and support those services and agencies that help families find parenting resources, substance abuse treatment, educational resources, mental health services, domestic violence services, affordable daycare and affordable health services. These are all solutions to help prevent child abuse and neglect.
NJ: Christie Highlights Progress of Department of Children and Families (Includes video)
NJTV – April 17, 2017
Thank you for staying out of the headlines. That was the message Gov. Chris Christie sent today to staff at the Department of Children and Families. A federal monitor 10 days ago gave the department good marks for its steady progress in responding to reports of child abuse.
Also: Federal supervisor of N.J.’s child welfare division says progress is being made: http://www.newsworks.org/index.php/new-jersey-more/item/103148-federal-oversight-manager-of-njs-child-welfare-division-says-progress-is-being-made
NY: New York City Schools discriminatory and damaging school-to-prison pipeline (Opinion)
City & State NY – April 17, 2017
New York City’s current exclusionary discipline policies negatively impact students like Ari, who was struggling with being transferred into foster care, when she received a 60-day suspension for her involvement in a physical altercation. They hurt young people like Markeys – an LGBTQ individual with a disability – who was hauled off by police to the emergency room for a mental health emergency.
Report: The $746 Million a Year School-to-Prison Pipeline: https://populardemocracy.org/news/publications/746-million-year-school-prison-pipeline
OH: Wood County Children’s Services hopes to sign up more foster parents (Includes video)
WTOL – April 17, 2017
The Wood County Children’s Services will have two new employees, which they hope will alleviate some of the stress in the department. This past year, the organization took in almost 200 more children, many of them because of the opioid epidemic in the county.
OK: Deaths of 5 babies linked to hard drug exposure, agency says
Tulsa World – April 16, 2017
Paizlie was one of at least five newborns in Oklahoma exposed to methamphetamine, heroin or other opiates who died in 2016 within six months of leaving the hospital with a parent who was using drugs, according to the Oklahoma Commission on Children and Youth.
OR: The affordable housing solution (Opinion)
Register-Guard – April 16, 2017
If new low-income or subsidized housing can be added, Fox lists three types that are most urgently needed: one-bedroom apartments, units for women who are victims of domestic violence and housing for young people emerging from the foster care system. Then he adds a fourth, housing units for the people receiving help from ShelterCare’s Frequent Users Systems Engagement program, which assists those homeless people who are the highest-volume users of public services.
TX: The Surprising Issue Uniting Left and Right in Texas
OneOzy – April 18, 2017
Texas ranked 48th nationally in per-capita state mental health agency spending in 2013, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation. Support for improving that poor showing is coming from the top. House Speaker Joe Straus has said mental health is a high priority in this round in the legislature, which meets for only 140 days every two years. The game plan: Flex legislative muscle on mental health care in schools and sprinkle in experimental funding for clinics that reach overlooked populations, like 18- to 25-year-olds. “Texas is doing different things, innovative things,” says Sarah Narendorf, assistant professor at the Graduate College of Social Work at the University of Houston.
TX: Private Prison Company Gets Another Immigration Lockup in Texas
San Antonio Current – April 17, 2017
Texas will get yet another immigrant detention center run by a private company with a cloudy history, the latest sign of the for-profit prison industry’s reversal of fortunes under President Donald Trump.
TX: Report: 65 Texas foster children stayed in CPS offices in March
AP/KXAN – April 17, 2017
Records show the number of Texas foster children staying in agency offices or alternate sites due to lack of placement more than doubled in March, compared to February.
Also: Number of foster kids without placements in Texas doubles (Includes video): http://www.brownsvilleherald.com/news/texas/article_f5c64778-65ba-5d57-bf56-4f73a3a1c7d9.html
TX: Second Baptist state convention sued for alleged child abuse at agency
Baptist News Global – April 17, 2017
A lawsuit filed April 5 in Tarrant County, Texas, seeks to hold the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention liable for alleged physical and/or sexual abuse and neglect of seven children placed by the state in foster care at Texas Baptist Home for Children.
UT: Parents wanted: Utah families overlooking adoption while some kids go years without home (Includes video)
KUTV – April 17, 2017
Utah Foster Care, a non-profit organization contracted by the state of Utah, reports 2,700 children in the foster system at any given time. However, only 1,300 licensed foster families to care for those kids.
US: & Canada: Human Trafficking’s High Toll on Homeless Youth
US News & World Report – April 17, 2017
In the U.S. and Canada, nearly one-fifth of homeless youth are victims of human trafficking, according to new studies. Of 911 homeless young adults interviewed between February 2014 and March 2017, about 20 percent reported being trafficked for sex, labor or both. The majority, 15 percent, were trafficked for sex, 7.4 percent were trafficked for labor, and 3 percent were trafficked for both.
Report: Labor and Sex Trafficking Among Homeless Youth: https://www.covenanthouse.org/landing/trafficking/
US: MAP MONDAY: States with religious exemptions for healthcare of children
AllOnGeorgia – April 17, 2017
This week’s Map Monday addresses religious exemptions for parents seeking to opt out of certain protocols of healthcare for children. The map above illustrates the varying policies for full exemptions and health care requirements of person under the age of 18, by state.
US: Renewing CHIP Is Bipartisan No-brainer (Opinion)
Youth Today – April 17, 2017
Children and youth who receive Medicaid are in families with low incomes and/or are children who have special health care needs or are in the child welfare system, and some are former foster youth. Their Medicaid benefits include vaccinations, well-child exams, oral health, vision care, chronic disease management and needed therapies. Going without any of those or facing a cutback in eligible providers would harm the healthy growth and development of our most vulnerable children and youth.
US: Road blocks in place as foster parents file taxes (Includes video)
KOAA – April 17, 2017
With Tax Day looming, local foster parents are running into road blocks as they file. Some, even missing out on the tax breaks they deserve.
Canada: Child welfare, environment among top election issues for B.C. First Nations
CBC News – April 15, 2017
According to Judy Wilson, the Chief of the Neskonlith Indian Band, changes to the Ministry of Children & Families (MCFD) are urgently needed as well.
Kenya: Plans to intensify efforts to address child neglect cases
Coast Week – April 15, 2017
Kenya plans to intensify efforts to address child neglect cases in order to eliminate child abuse in the country, officials said on Tuesday. Ministry of East African Community, Labour and Social Services Director of Children Services Noah Sanganyi told journalists in Nairobi that Kenya has designed parenting programmes to empower parents with skills to keep their children safe and thus reduce their vulnerability to abuse.
AR: Foster program opens its doors to boys ages 16 to 21
KTHV – April 14, 2017
The staff at Second Chance Youth Ranch is opening its door for more boys that are aging out of the program. A new foster home is opening up for boys ages 16 to 21. Director of Operations Rachel Hubbard is excited to welcome four additional foster kids into their new home in Bryant.
CA: Babies on Drugs: Another Sad Chapter in California’s Opioid Saga
inewsource – April 17, 2017
State and county health officials couldn’t say what is behind the spike other than more pregnant women are using addictive drugs. But other possible explanations include clinical policy changes that promote more aggressive infant and mother screening, expanded definitions of populations at high risk, and a new national diagnostic coding system that took effect Oct. 1, 2015.
CA: Shortage of Foster Parents Reaching Critical
Santa Barbara Independent – April 14, 2017
It should go without saying – regardless of political affiliation – it is far better for our communities to solve local needs rather than depend upon the government. Right now on the Central Coast there is a significant need which needs families and individuals to rally together to solve!
CO: Kit Carson County child welfare trying to recover after turmoil, mishandled cases
Denver Post – April 15, 2017
When state investigators reviewed Kit Carson County’s child welfare division, they counted 73 cases of suspected child abuse and neglect with no documented follow-up to show whether those kids were safe.
CO: Bill Supporting Child-Welfare Caseworkers Passes House Committee
Westworld – April 14, 2017
A bill that aims to create a task force to provide support – including mental-health services – to Colorado’s child-welfare caseworkers crossed its first hurdle on Tuesday, April 11, when it passed out of the House Public Health Care and Human Services Committee by a vote of ten to three.
CO: Editorial: Don’t short change lifeline for abused children (Includes video)
Coloradoan – April 14, 2017
There were more than 1,000 reported instances of child abuse or neglect in Larimer County in 2016. In the same year, 43 percent of the county’s roughly 90 caseworkers left their jobs. Compare that with a turnover rate of 12 percent in Weld County and 14 percent in Boulder County.
CT: Sexual Abuse at Choate Went On for Decades, School Acknowledges
New York Times – April 13, 2017
Choate Rosemary Hall, the elite Connecticut boarding school, said on Thursday that at least 12 former teachers had sexually molested – and, in at least one case, raped – students in a pattern of abuse dating to the 1960s.
FL: Bill aims to create alternative to foster care for struggling families
Tampa Bay Times – April 16, 2017
One parent losing a job, being admitted to a hospital or struggling with addiction can be difficult for any family. For a single parent, however, it can also mean losing children to the foster care system. Supporters of a proposed law hope to change that.
FL: Melania Trump visits girls at HomeSafe in Lake Worth
Palm Beach Post – April 14, 2017
First lady Melania Trump made an unannounced visit this morning to seven girls at a group home for victims of abuse and domestic violence in Lake Worth.
Also: Press Release: http://www.helphomesafe.org/images/Melania-Trump-visits-HomeSafe—April-2017.pdf
FL: Compensation For Surviving Barahona Child Among Claims Bills Heading To House Floor
WUSF Public Media – April 14, 2017
A number of claims bills which found Florida’s child welfare agency at fault are now heading to the House floor. Among them is a high profile bill involving twins that further compensates the surviving victim, in an abuse case that took his twin sister’s life.
FL: Editorial: Legislature should fund Guardian ad Litem program
Tampa Bay Times – April 14, 2017
With the Florida House and Senate negotiating next year’s state budget, there is no shortage of advocates lobbying for bigger pieces of the pie. The Guardian ad Litem program is uniquely deserving of a bump this year for the critical role it plays in serving Florida’s neediest children.
HI: Report cites Hawaii agency for not doing better job with boy
Associated Press – April 14, 2017
A Hawaii agency could have done a better job protecting a 6-year-old child who was abused and later died, a court-appointed expert said in a report.
IA: Marion kindergarten teacher charged with not reporting sexual abuse in classroom
KWWL – April 14, 2017
A Marion Kindergarten teacher at Starry Elementary is being charged with not reporting sexual abuse that was happening to children in her classroom by a high student volunteer.
IN: Creating brighter futures for kids in foster care (Includes video)
WANE – April 14, 2017
White’s Residential and Family Services doesn’t recruit, train, license and support foster care parents because it’s easy. In fact, it’s a challenging endeavor to become a foster parent. But White’s is one organization that is equipping foster parents to provide safe, nurturing and stable homes. Multiple foster parents who have gone through the program with White’s agree that it’s well worth the effort.
KS: Local shelter says dozens of youths falling victim to human trafficking; some city staff to receive training to help
Lawrence Journal-World – April 17, 2017
In the span of a year, dozens of human-trafficking victims are expected to seek shelter at The Willow Domestic Violence Center. And soon, the link to help could be a city employee. A new initiative will train city employees to recognize human trafficking, with the goal of improving the outcomes of the vulnerable youth who are typically its victims. Leaders at the Willow center said one scenario they see is a girl who has aged out of the foster care system, lacking family and resources.
Information Gateway resource: Human Trafficking: https://www.childwelfare.gov/topics/systemwide/trafficking/
KY: Lawmakers Approve Leasing Protections for Domestic Violence Victims (Includes audio)
Public News Service – April 17, 2017
Gov. Matt Bevin has signed House Bill 309, which ensures new leasing protections for victims of domestic violence. The new law also replaces the state’s outdated mandatory reporting law on spousal abuse with an ‘education and referral’ approach.
MD: Teacher morale being crushed in Prince George’s County (Includes video)
WUSA 9 – April 14, 2017
Teacher morale is being crushed by a “witch hunt” atmosphere in Prince George’s County that has resulted in at least 636 school staffers being placed on paid administrative leave since August to investigate allegations of misconduct that prove to be unfounded or minor, according to union officials and a teacher who is currently being investigated.
MN: Protection petitions filed for 2 girls in mutilation case
Associated Press – April 14, 2017
The petitions were filed in Hennepin and Anoka counties on Thursday, the same day a Michigan doctor was charged with performing genital mutilation on the two girls. According to the FBI, Dr. Jumana Nagarwala was arrested after the 7-year-olds identified her as the person who performed procedures on them in February at a clinic in suburban Detroit.
Also: Michigan Doctor Charged With Performing Female Genital Mutilation On Girls: http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/04/14/523917425/michigan-doctor-charged-with-performing-female-genital-mutilation-on-girls?utm_medium=RSS&utm_campaign=storiesfromnpr
MN: Reports of child abuse spike dramatically in Minnesota
Associated Press – April 14, 2017
State officials say nearly 40,000 children were suspected of being abused or neglected in Minnesota last year, a 25 percent increase from 2015.
ND: Lawmakers move away from penalties for addicted moms
Bismarck Tribune – April 14, 2017
It’s unknown exactly how many babies are born each year with neonatal abstinence syndrome in North Dakota. A task force devoted to the issue of substance-exposed newborns found that 120 babies were diagnosed with NAS and claimed on Medicaid in 2013. Representatives from the Three Affiliated Tribes, Spirit Lake Tribe and Turtle Mountain Tribe approximated that 183 babies were born there with NAS in 2015.
NH: DCYF loses: Open to public scrutiny (Opinion)
New Hampshire Union Leader – April 16, 2017
The legal effort to hold New Hampshire’s Division of Children, Youth and Families accountable for the deaths of two children cleared a key hurdle last week. Hillsborough County Superior Court Judge Gillian Abramson denied the state’s request to seal all records in the case.
NY: County Executive Mike Hein Announces That Ulster County Recognizes April As Child Abuse Prevention Month (Press release)
Ulster County, NY – April 14, 2017
Ulster County Executive Mike Hein, Ulster County District Attorney D. Holley Carnright and Commissioner of Social Services Michael Iapoce, Esq., announce that Ulster County recognizes April as Child Abuse Prevention Month in Ulster County. In order to raise awareness, Ulster County has arranged for the display of a banner in front of the Department of Social Services on Albany Avenue in Kingston during the month of April.
OH: Another Viewpoint: Everyone must play role in preventing child abuse and neglect
Lorain Morning Journal – April 16, 2017
April is Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention Month, nationally designated since 1983. Annually, communities across our country focus their attention on the problem of child abuse and neglect, encouraging all citizens to continue our collective commitment to children’s safety, permanence and well-being by supporting services that strengthen children and families, becoming involved in your community as a mentor, youth leader, tutor or other volunteer, and learning more about the role of children services, including how to report suspected maltreatment of children.
OR: Ashland students, in media spotlight, get lessons on reporting sexual misconduct
Oregonian – April 14, 2017
On Dec. 7, news broke about Ashland High School and police investigating sexual assault accusations after a 17-year-old girl posted on social media that a fellow student, a 17-year-old boy, had repeatedly tried to touch her and had raped her friends. The story profiles Ashland teens, including the student who posted on Facebook, who “forced their school district to change how it handles sexual violence.”
TN: State Foster Care System almost free of Brian A. lawsuit (Includes video)
Fox 17 Nashville – April 14, 2017
“This was an agency back then that was really plagued by dangerous systemic problems such as high caseloads and the tendency to place kids in huge orphanage type settings and emergency shelters,” said Ira Lustbader.
TX: Child abuse prevention a multi-organization effort (Opinion)
Hill Country Community Journal – April 16, 2017
Kellie Early, president of the Child Services Board, is passionate about child abuse victims getting their immediate needs met, first in those moments when they are being removed from a dangerous situation, and then following up with them in temporary placements. These volunteers placed the 377 blue ribbon signs at the Kerr County Courthouse, their annual reminder of how many children are hurting here
TX: How do the Texas House and Senate budgets compare?
Texas Tribune – April 14, 2017
The state’s child welfare system, lawmakers in both chambers voted to boost funding for Child Protective Services and foster care.
TX: New data shows promising changes for Child Protective Services (Includes video)
Associated Press – April 14, 2017
Last year, Governor Greg Abbott described Child Protective Services as a “broken system.” However, newly-released data shows improvements are being made to help abused and neglected children in Texas.
TX: State redoubles effort to find foster homes as numbers surge for kids sleeping in offices
Houston Chronicle – April 14, 2017
A week after a Houston foster teen was fatally struck by a van after leaving a state office where she had slept overnight, the embattled Child Protective Services released a new plan to address foster care “capacity” issues, including looking for help in neighboring states.
UT: Op-ed: It’s time to change the conversation about mental health and suicide
Salt Lake Tribune – April 15, 2017
Utah’s high rate of suicide, especially in children and young adults, is a cry for Utah policymakers’ attention. While the state has health policies requiring suicide prevention programs, they aren’t enough.
UT: Boyd Matheson: No safety in geography for homeless (Opinion)
Deseret News – April 14, 2017
Homelessness is not a “thing” for us to deal with. It is about helping people, our fellow travelers on the road of life. Just as a discussion on education should begin by acknowledging each child as a unique individual with unique needs, our conversation about homelessness must also begin with a focus on the plight of the person on the street.
WI: Kenosha community grapples with rising number of homeless students
Kenosha News – April 15, 2017
In 2004, there were 5,354 homeless students in Wisconsin, according to the Wisconsin Department of Instruction. By academic year 2015-2016 this number had grown to 18,497.
WI: Douglas County sees jump in child protection cases
Superior Telegram – April 14, 2017
The number of licensed foster homes in Douglas County increased last year, but they filled quickly as February rolled into March. “We were doing OK, and then all of a sudden, we took 20 kids into custody in three weeks, which is huge,” said Doreen Wehmas, intake and assessment unit supervisor with Douglas County Health and Human Services.
US: Adoption Fairness Bill: Bipartisan Legislation for Tribal Special Needs Children
Indian Country Today – April 16, 2017
Bill would give parents adopting tribal special needs children an adoption tax credit available to states.
Also: A Right-Wing Think Tank Is Trying to Bring Down the Indian Child Welfare Act. Why? (Opinion): https://indiancountrymedianetwork.com/news/politics/right-wing-think-tank-trying-bring-indian-child-welfare-act/
US: Partnership to help foster youth attend, complete college
University Business – April 16, 2017
FosterClub, a national network for foster youth, announced a new partnership today with student success coaching leader InsideTrack to help close college attendance and achievement gaps among foster youth and children. The coaching initiative bridges the period between emancipation and college, where many foster youth abandon education due to a lack of support and guidance. It then continues to support them through their first year of postsecondary education to ensure they make a successful transition.
US: CDC study: Half-million U.S. women, girls at risk for genital mutilation
Macomb Daily – April 14, 2017
The 2012 study estimates 513,000 females under age 18 are at risk for female genital mutilation, an increase more than four times that of a 1990 estimate. Another study, conducted by The Population Reference Bureau in February 2015, estimates up to 507,000 U.S. women and girls are at risk of undergoing the procedure.
US: The Other Missing Children: Those Fleeing Abusive and Neglectful Homes
Chronicle of Social Change – April 14, 2017
Federal data suggests that nationwide over 20 percent of the youths who run away or are thrown out of their homes reported being physically or sexually abused at home in the prior year or fearing abuse upon returning home. Many of these children have been betrayed by a system that failed to protect them, leaving running away as their only option.
US: American Parents Are Adopting Fewer Children From Abroad
Associated Press – April 13, 2017
The number of foreign children adopted by U.S. parents dropped almost 5 percent last year, continuing a steady decline that’s now extended for 12 years, according to new State Department figures.
US: Separate mothers and children: How a Trump threat deterred illegal migrants (Includes video)
Reuters – April 13, 2017
President Donald Trump has won the first major battle in his war on illegal immigration, and he did it without building his wall. The victory was announced last week by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which released figures showing a 93 percent drop since December of parents and children caught trying to cross the Mexico border illegally.
Vietnam: Recording 1,000 child sexual abuse cases each year
Vietnam.net – April 14, 2017
More than 1,000 cases of sexual abuse against children occur in Vietnam each year and in the first quarter of 2017, 33 cases were reported, heard a forum in Hanoi on April 14. Organised by the Vietnam Association for Protection of Child Rights (VAPCR), Child Rights Working Group (CRWG) and child rights net (CRnet), the forum aimed to collect opinions from individuals and social organisations for preventing sexual abuse and physical violence against children.