Part 1 of a two part series looking into Child Abuse and the Child Welfare System. This episode we are joined by Mike Tikkanen, world leader in advocacy for abused children. He explains the state of the system, the secrecy and lack of transparency inherent in the system and why it is a widespread phenomena.Details
I had the honor of sitting next to Dee Wilson when he delivered the Casey Family Assessment of Hennepin County’s Child welfare system to the Hennepin County Commissioners (Minnesota’s Child Endangerment Model). Dee drew attention to damage being done by the toxic atmosphere in the Child & Family Services system, the inability of St Joseph’s home for children to manage the level of trauma their young clients were living with and pointed out the red herring that HIPPA laws have created by forbidding almost any public discussion of the conditions within the homes of abused children and the institutions of child protection. I resonated with how social workers are traumatized by their work and how community based solutions involving stakeholders and redefining what we want for outcomes.
All a part of why turnover is high in social work and terrible policies doom children and families to more cyclical trauma and failure.state child welfare systems
When reading Dee’s recapping of County screened out rates remember that when 4 year old Eric Dean died after 15 reports of child abuse by mandated reporters, there were 4 MN counties that screened out 90% of all child abuse calls.
Dee keeps a blog and wrote something recently that every social worker needs to read. He is the smartest person in the room on the topic.
All Adults Are the Protectors of All ChildrenDetails
Dyers sentenced to 15 years for felony child abuse
Two Fort Collins parents convicted of neglecting their daughter’s seizure condition and allowing her to all but waste away were sentenced Thursday to …
Fort Collins couple Doug and Leah Dyer sentenced to 15 years in child abuse case – Loveland Reporter-Herald
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MILO: ‘I Was A Victim Of Child Abuse’
“I am a gay man, and a child abuse victim.” wrote MILO in a Facebook post shortly after his press conference, “Between the ages of 13 and 16, two …
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AKARA tracks current news about at risk children bringing transparency and attention to our youngest and most vulnerable citizens.
This is only 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.
The U.S. is experiencing the 4th and 5th generation of abused children raising their own families without parenting skills and with serious drug, alcohol and mental health issues.
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)
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 CHILDRENDetails
Man In Custody Following Death Of Eagan Woman, Unborn Child
“We are devastated at the tragic death of my daughter Senicha and her unborn son. She was a loving, kind, smart and beautiful young woman who …
Woman killed in Eagan home ID’d; her 32-week fetus also died – Minneapolis Star Tribune
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Pregnant woman found dead in Eagan townhome was ‘excited to be a mother’
Pregnant woman found dead in Eagan townhome was ‘excited to be a mother’ … Lane, a neighborhood east of Minnesota 13 and south of Lone Oak Road. … “We are devastated at the tragic death of my daughter Senicha and her …
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Australia: Royal Commission releases damning statistics of child abuse in Australian Catholic Church
New Kerala – February 06, 2017
Seven percent of Australia’s Catholic priests were accused of abusing children in the six decades since 1950, according to new data from the Royal Commission.
Canada: Ministry Says Supports ‘Available’ to Youth Exiting Province’s Care. How Available?
TYEE – February 05, 2017
A guide to options for at-risk young adults, and why advocates say they aren’t enough.
Greece: Unaccompanied Minors in Greece: Who Can ‘Save’ Them?
University of Oxford, Faculty of Law – February 06, 2017
It is estimated that unaccompanied minors accounted for approximately 35 per cent of the total population that crossed from Turkey to Greece in 2015.
India: New online adoption system fails orphans
Mid-Day.com – February 05, 2017
Central Adoption Resource Authority (CARA) from The Adoption Federation of Maharashtra (AFM) – an association of the state’s 65 adoption agencies – that helps facilitate the adoption process in the state.
International: Deadliest winter for refugee and migrant children crossing the Central Mediterranean, says UNICEF (Press release)
Press Release Point – February 03, 2017
A record number of refugee and migrant deaths in the Mediterranean over the past three months, including an estimated 190 children*, has prompted an urgent appeal from UNICEF to leaders of European Union member states meeting in Malta.
Switzerland: Portraits help ‘stolen children’ reclaim their lives
swissinfo – February 04, 2017
A series of photographs showing in the Swiss capital Bern tell the story of Switzerland’s ‘discarded children’.
The 35 W bridge failure will end up costing about one billion dollars (below) and if our policy makers would wake up, they will see that it was about five hundred times more expensive than the requested bridge maintenance that would have kept the bridge in “pristine condition”**Details
Part 1 of a 3 part series looking into Child Abuse and the Child Welfare System. This episode we are joined by Mike Tikkanen, world leader in advocacy for abused children. He explains the state of the system, the secrecy and lack of transparency inherent in the system and why it is a widespread phenomena.
Hear Episode and Read ArticleDetails
This year local media have covered five child murders and one near-fatality at various stages of resolution. Links to the stories are here.
In only one case is there public information about whether county child protection was involved.
State law requires each county to review its child abuse related fatalities and near-fatalities, and to submit their findings to the Department of Human Services (DHS) in a report that is publicly available. Counties have either ignored our requests for these reports or sent cautiously worded summaries in their place.
More accountability and transparency are needed.
DHS is currently deciding whether to immediately release these reports to the public when they receive them from counties. We encourage them to do so. If not we will propose legislation to make this a requirement.
Join the Discussion on FacebookDetails
Florida February Child Protection News gathered and presented by Dr. Denise R. Womer, Ph.D., is a former law enforcement officer for 17 years and former DCF Investigator for the State of Florida. Dr. Womer has taught in higher education for 14 years and currently is a Professor for Kaplan University teaching in the School of Social…Details
Baby Justice Rees’ father responds to charges in infant’s death
The father of Baby Justice Rees, who found dead two years ago in a Yolo County slough, faces an involuntary manslaughter charge in connection to …
Dead baby’s father lashes out from jail – Davis Enterprise
Father charged after baby found dead near Sacramento River – Santa Rosa Press Democrat
DA Announces New Charges for Frank Rees in Death of Baby – The People’s Vanguard of Davis (subscription)
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Questions remain in baby’s death
WPRI 12 Eyewitness News
WARWICK, R.I. (WPRI) — Investigators said Thursday they were still trying to determine how a seven-month old Warwick baby died. Willow Ramos …
DCYF previously investigated family of infant who died in Warwick – WPRI 12 Eyewitness News
Ex-Hanson resident charged with neglect after infant daughter dies – Wicked Local
Father charged after unresponsive baby daughter dies in RI – WHDH-TV
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Mari Frankel’s video documentary “Foster” below is stunning. Although it is about Florida’s foster system (by a CASA GAL just like me) it demonstrates the problems within the child protection system and the traumas & medications foster children live.with.
Mari Frankel’s video is aligned with KARA’s book and documentary projects that address child protection stories that are happening in MN.
Share this with people you know and/or,
Contact me to talk about ideas for making this video in MN (we have begun the process and have been partnered with TPT) but need help to complete the project.
Let’s be a voice for children
All Adults Are The Protectors of All Children
The password is fosterDetails
A very smart person that I consider a friend suggested that the sad story of Florida’s foster care system (in the blog article just prior to this one) is not comparable to the state of foster care in my state of MN. Suggesting that things are fine in MN’s foster care system. Nothing to see here, let’s talk about something else.
Dee Wilson delivered the Casey Foundations report on child protection in MN and softly stated that our group home facilities were grossly unable to deal with the level of trauma and behavioral problems that these overwhelmed homes were experiencing.
Just a week ago MN closed the group home in St Cloud MN because of many violations over many years.
That home allowed kids to bang their heads against walls to the point of concussions, facial injuries and head trauma along with forced sex in the presence of staff.
Don’t blame the staff*. It’s the management and the people making the rules. It is always the management that determines the wage, the training and the supervision that will be in place in every business endeavor. It’s always the policy makers that determine the oversight and resources available to the homes providing the service. These things are made extremely clear in the Florida video.
To expect low waged and undertrained people to manage children traumatized by years of abuse now being managed by a cold and distant state is just unworkable.Details
OR: Report: Child welfare review teams under microscope
Merced Sun-Star – March 06, 2017
Barely three days after 12-year-old Caden Berry of Keizer died, the head of Oregon’s child welfare agency ordered a full review of the agency’s interactions with his family.
Also: Report: Child welfare agency struggled to fix problems: http://www.bendbulletin.com/localstate/5126903-151/report-child-welfare-agency-struggled-to-fix-problems?referrer=fpblob
OR: 44 children left in harm’s way: Oregon’s child welfare agency struggled to fix problems
Statesman Journal – March 04, 2017
Clyde Saiki, director of the state Department of Human Services, wanted to know if “system issues” may have prevented the state from saving the boy’s life. DHS has publicly published reviews for at least 44 children since 2004, involving children the agency knew of who died or were severely injured.
TX: Democratic lawmaker says Texas CPS workloads make ‘a travesty’ of child protection
Dallas Morning News – March 06, 2017
The bill would encourage CPS to hire 893 more employees over the next two years and create an additional 825 slots at sister agencies such as Adult Protective Services, Child Care Licensing and the unit that operates the protective services department’s hotline for reporting abuse, the Legislative Budget Board has estimated.
In Sweden, parents are entitled to 480 days of paidparental leave when a child is born or adopted. … The remaining 90 days are paid at a flat rate. Those who are not in employment are also entitled to paidparental leave. Parental leave can be taken up until a child turns eight.
10 things that make Sweden family-friendly – Sweden.se
Does Minnesota (your state here) want to know how its thousands of foster children are doing in school? Is there information available for people that care and want to see abused and neglected children at least get a chance to graduate from high school and lead a normal life?
The lack of transparency surrounding child abuse, child protection, foster care, drugging of very young children (Prozac, Ritalin, Zoloft…) indicates that while we talk big about valuing children in our community, we don’t care enough to want to know what their needs are.
If we knew that 80% of youth aging out of foster care were leading dysfunctional lives (last study of ten years ago), that 48% of state ward children are being forced to take psychotropic medications (true in Florida today) or that 4 MN counties screened out 90% of child abuse calls (true at the time of 4 year old Eric Dean’s murder by his step mother), then some concerned citizen, politician or administrator somewhere might be outraged enough to lobby for change.
Until information by our institutions becomes public, the problem simply does not exist and no one appears to care enough to see these awful things change.
Cudos to Minnesota for turning the child endangerment model into a genuine child protection model. It’s a great first step.Details
MN Child Protection News March 2017
KARA gathers news about abused Minnesota’s abused children every month and provides a snapshot of Child Protection and how our state values its children.
If you are an aspiring writer/reporter, KARA needs you to help gather and report on these stories.
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org with REPORTING in the subject line.
All Adults Are the Protectors of All Children
Safe Passage For Children MN (Join them and make child friendly legislation a reality)
CASAMN (become a guardian ad Litem and speak for abused children)
KARA Star Tribune Articles; Child Protection Who Will Speak For Children?
KARA Star Tribune Articles; Child Protection Who Will Speak For Children?Details
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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.Details
Dad jailed in Gentilly infant’s death accused of mentioning crack use, accidental fall before arrest
Under questioning after his infant son’s death last week, Jeffery Edward Coleman said that he had used crack before the boy accidentally fell from a .
SAFE PASSAGE FOR CHILDREN MN (Federal audit of MN child welfare shows inadequate metrics, resources, quality assurance & training)
If you live and Minnesota and are willing to make time for one trip a year to the Capital in St Paul to speak for a child, there is nothing more meaningful that you could do for at risk children than volunteer with Safe Passage for Children of Minnesota. The appointment with your state legislator/s is arranged by Safe Passage for Children and you are provided a brief outline of the key issues facing abused children for you to share with your legislator.
Meeting time is seldom over 15 minutes but that will be enough time for you to show commitment to children and share the most critical information available with someone who can make a difference in the lives of the children you are advocating for.
Your state legislators actually do listen to you and they care what you have to say. Without your 15 minutes of child advocacy, legislators have little insights into the issues facing abused and neglected children. After all, children have no voice in the homes they are raised in, the media or government (they can’t vote).
Thank you Safe Passage for another powerful day on the hill
All Adults Are the Protectors of All ChildrenDetails
As a longtime volunteer, CASA guardian ad litem and writer/reporter on child abuse I know how voiceless children are. Think about it, they don’t even know that what is happening to them is wrong.
I also know how common child sexual abuse is and how sex abuse traumas destroy childhoods and lasts forever. It is the most tragic and under-reported crime in America.
Yesterday I sat through a terrific class on self-defense developed for children about escaping from sexual predators.
The instructor presented powerful information that will save pain and violence for kids in the class before and even after they enter adulthood.
About half of all women experience sexual violence in their life and about one fifth of men.
As a CASA guardian ad litem I helped to remove fifty children from toxic homes where half of them had been sexually abused.
One two-year-old, several four-year old’s and the rest under ten – and most of them suffered daily for years before child protection became involved. I have witnessed again and again the long term effects of child sex abuse traumas.
I was crushed at the end of the presentation when the instructor flat out stated that she very deliberately allowed no opportunity for a child in her class to describe sexual violence already experienced because “I am a mandated reporter and you know what that means”.
How few opportunities a child has to tell someone and how likely the abuse is going to continue until they do tell someone that can help them.
What’s a five-year old to do?
Let’s not put ourselves out or get some of this on us is a big part of the problem.
ALL ADULTS ARE THE PROTECTORS OF ALL CHILDRENDetails
Early intervention is vital – not only in ensuring that fewer and fewer children grow up in abusive or neglectful homes, but also to help as many children as possible reach their full potential.
The Audit Commission has estimated that, if effective early intervention had been provided for just one in ten of those young people sentenced to custody each year, public services alone could have saved over £100 million annually.Details
International Child Protection News March 2017 (send us your news from around the world – email@example.com with research/writing in the subject line)
KARA tracks current news about at risk children bringing transparency and attention to our youngest and most vulnerable citizens. This is only a sampling of what should be reported – the great majority of child trauma & abuse never gets reported.
Aspiring researcher / writers, KARA needs you. Help KARA report on at risk children in your community.
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org with Research/Writing in the subject line.
ALL ADULTS ARE THE PROTECTORS OF ALL CHILDREN – Join The KARA Team (and receive free weekly updates on Friday mornings)
Compilation of information and writing on this page is the hard work of the KARA team and volunteer Eshanee Singh
Please donate now and support these pages &
1) Our documentary on the needs of at-risk children and breaking the cycle of abuse
2) Our second book and college child abuse travelling displays (let us know if your college or university wants to participate)Details
MN has recently forcibly closed foster group homes in St Cloud and Buhl and housed state ward children in hospital rooms because there was no place else to put them.
How would it make you feel as a traumatized six year old to live in a hospital room because our community just does not have the money or concern to find you a home?
Not normal, not loved or of any value at all.
Think about becoming a volunteer CASA guardian ad Litem (or making a donation to a fund that gives foster children things that the state does not provide – make them more like your childrenDetails