Today’s post are my best sources for information about U.S. children.
The Arizona article should cause us all to respond.
It identifies a nightmarish trend as America allows the murder of it’s very young children without safeguards. I was called by newspaper reporters repeatedly last summer when an 18 month old baby drowned after 14 visits by child protection. The reporters were surprised to hear of my own case where 49 police calls were reported to a home where the 7 year old girl was finally removed from the home only because she tried to kill her younger sister in the presence of the police (the seven year old had most likely been prostituted in the home).
Blaming overworked and under-resourced child protection workers is not the answer. These stories are becoming more common and more frightening across the U.S. Caring for children beats outrage. Nothing is solved if child protection doesn’t have the support or resources to act.
Arizona appears to be reaching a crisis politically with its divisive attitudes towards poor people and immigrants. No one wins when children lose. Society will pay the price when these children become unable to transition into adulthood.
I welcome national and international information that you send me for future reference.
Academy Against Violence and Abuse, www.avahealth.org
At kidsdata.org, we aim to give you the data you need to tell the stories you need to tell, whether those stories are about policies that need to change, programs that need support, or issues that need attention. New research commissioned by Child Advocacy 360 sheds light on the kinds of stories that move people to action on behalf of children and youth.
Child Welfare in the News
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HI: Backlogs reported in Department of Human Services
The Associated Press State & Local Wire August 31, 2010
State workers have told legislators that backlogs of welfare, food stamp and medical applications need to be solved.
ND: Native American numbers on rise in North Dakota foster care system
In-Forum August 30, 2010
In North Dakota, Native Americans are the largest minority group represented in the foster system, and their numbers are on the rise. They accounted for 29 percent of the state’s foster children in 2008 and 37 percent in 2009, state child welfare data show.
WA: Social service agencies seeing increased demand
Tri-City Herald (Washington) August 28, 2010
Directors of three local agencies told the Columbia Basin Badger Club on Friday the statistics are disheartening, especially when they’re seeing less money invested in prevention programs that could save society costs in the long-term.
WA/OR: Oregon, Washington Streamline Cross-Border Child Welfare Placements
OPB News August 30, 2010
Child welfare managers from Oregon and Washington signed an agreement Monday. It aims to streamline the placement of children in state custody across state lines of children in state custody.
MN: Funding crunch hurting shelter
Star Tribune (Minneapolis, MN) August 25, 2010
Alexandra House, which helps victims of domestic abuse, has lost much of its public funding, prompting it to look harder for help from the private sector.
CA: Los Angeles County didn’t report child deaths
Los Angeles Times August 31, 2010
Officials failed to publicly disclose fatalities resulting from abuse or neglect, an audit finds. Also: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/n/a/2010/08/30/state/n204807D13.DTL
CA: Foster parents have right to fair reimbursement, court rule
Los Angeles Times August 30, 2010
The U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals found that the state was violating the Child Welfare Act by failing to adequately compensate foster parents caring for about 13,000 wards of the state of California.
SD: Suit alleges abuse at SD tribal detention center
The Daily Republic August 30, 2010
A boy’s guardian has filed a $10 million lawsuit against the federal government alleging the child was branded with a hot nail and sexually assaulted by another boy while being held at a tribal detention center.
AZ: Child abuse isn’t a priority in Arizona
Arizona Daily Star August 31, 2010
Michael is the sixth Pima County child to die in recent years while under the watch of state Child Protective Services. Each killing spurred outrage and demands that things be done better, that children be saved from the relatives who do them harm. “Reforms” were put in place in 2008. Little, it appears, has changed.
RUSSIA: Russia and US to sign adoption agreement
The Voice of Russia August 31, 2010
Even though adoption agencies overseas are required to report on the circumstances of adopted Russian kids to Russian welfare services annually, Russian children living with American families are deprived of any rights and are absolutely helpless in the absence of a comprehensive bilateral agreement. Russia’s ombudsman Pavel Astakhov says monitoring through adoption agencies does not work.
Russia: Russian orphans adopted by sadistic torturers
The Voice of Russia August 30, 2010
To date, 17 Russian-born orphans adopted in the United States have died at the hands of their foster parents. Speaking in Moscow Monday, the Russian children’s rights Ombudsman Pavel Astakhov urged the American authorities to thoroughly investigate the latest instance of abuse of Russian-born adoptees in the United States.
US: Three “POV” films explore how adoptees question their race, identity
Denver Post August 31, 2010
Some 2 percent of all American children are adopted. Many of them are adopted across racial, ethnic and cultural lines, adding a distinctive, not always easy layer to their identities. Also: http://blogcritics.org/video/article/tv-preview-wo-ai-ni-i/
US: Children raised by gay couples show good progress through school
Stanford University News August 30, 2010
By mining data from the 2000 Census, sociologist Michael Rosenfeld figured out the rates at which kids raised by gay and straight couples repeated a grade during elementary or middle school. He found that children of same-sex parents have essentially the same educational achievement as their peers growing up in heterosexual households.
US: 5 Worries Parents Should Drop, And 5 They Shouldn’t
NPR.org August 30, 2010
“These worries that we have are so rare,” says Christie Barnes, mother of four and author of The Paranoid Parents Guide. “It’s like packing a snow shovel in case it snows in Las Vegas.”
MO: Carthage adoption case may make it to Missouri Supreme Court
Joplin Globe August 30, 2010
Arguments in an adoption case involving a Carthage couple and a child born to a Guatemalan mother in the country illegally may be heard by the Missouri Supreme Court.