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Massachusetts CPS News Archive
Massachusetts News Coverage
Mother, boyfriend arraigned in child's death
A mother and her boyfriend suspected in the beating death of the woman's 4-year-old daughter were asked about physical abuse of the child months ago by a family doctor, according to court records.
But Lymari Acevedo, 27, and her 33-year-old boyfriend, Richard Castillo, never returned to the doctor's office for a follow-up visit, according to court records, and the suspected abuse was never referred to state agencies. The identity of the doctor was not revealed as the case is under investigation. On Thursday, the first time Worcester police responded to the couple's West Boylston Drive apartment for the welfare of the child, she was already dead, with bruises on her chest, thigh, arms, and back, according to court records. Rigor had begun to settle in on her body. The child was identified yesterday as Arianie Acevedo.
February 19, 2011
Child welfare advocates protest funding cuts in Boston
Advocates claim reductions in services fueled by budget cuts have harmed the state's child and family welfare systems,
BOSTON - Having absorbed more than $100 million in cuts over the past four years across the state's child welfare system, advocates pressed Tuesday for the restoration of funding for state services they labeled as integral to making sure at-risk children and their families receive the help they need. Activists rallied and claimed reductions in services fueled by budget cuts have harmed the state's child and family welfare systems, specifically limiting access to services for families voluntarily requesting help from the state.
February 8, 2011
Brown calls for hearings on disability program
US Senator Scott Brown called yesterday for Senate hearings to examine a $10 billion federal disability program for indigent children.
Brown's request came after US Representative Richard Neal, a Springfield Democrat, responded to the Globe series this week by asking for the House Ways and Means Committee to hold hearings to look at whether too many children are being given psychotropic medications in order to prove the severity of the child's condition and help them qualify for benefits of up to $700 a month and Medicaid coverage.
The Boston Globe
December 18, 2010
Teenagers in SSI program face a cruel dilemma
Many teenage recipients of federal disability benefits say they feel pressure to avoid work, not wanting to raise doubts about their status and jeopardize vital family income
Federal officials have tried to address the problem by creating programs that could encourage teens to work. In one such program, for instance, any full-time student under age 22 is eligible, upon request, to earn up to $6,600 a year, without facing reductions in their SSI check. But the program is not used much, because few families seem to know about it. So far, only 3 percent of those eligible have taken advantage of it.
The Boston Globe
December 14, 2010
Wandering tot still in foster care
Alison Goodwin, director of public affairs for the Department of Children and Families, confirmed yesterday that her agency was investigating after receiving a report of the girl.
She could not say whether investigators had been to the child's home prior to the incident. No charges had been filed against girl's parents as of yesterday, according to Salem police.
The Salem News
July 8, 2010
Good news: Mass. school now may limit condoms to, um, fifth-graders and older
A moral victory, my friends: From now on, if you want a condom from the school nurse in Provincetown, you'll need to be at least 10 years old.
A day after the new policy caused a media firestorm, School Committee chairman Peter Grosso said that Provincetown would probably limit condoms to fifth-graders and older. His stance stemmed from a conversation he had with Superintendent Beth Singer, author of the rule set to take effect this fall.
June 25, 2010
Medford homeschoolers won't walk with other grads
Eric Bentley isn't sad about missing out on a senior prom. He isn't sad about missing out on graduation either. In fact, he isn't sad about missing out on the high school experience altogether.
Bentley is one of the many students in the state who was homeschooled his entire life before going to college. The Watertown native and one-time Medford resident understands why some homeschooled kids might feel left out by not having the same high school experience as so many of their peers, but he says the pros far outweigh the cons.
June 10, 2010
Unschooling: Homeschooling Without Books, Tests or Classes
Out of an estimated 56 million school age children, about 1.5 million are homeschooled. Of that number, at least 100,000 are believed to be unschooled -- the term coined to describe an unorthodox approach to homeschooling.
The Biegler children live as though school doesn't exist. They're at home all day, but they're not being homeschooled. They're being "unschooled." There are no textbooks, no tests and no formal education at all in their world. What's more, that hands-off approach extends to other areas of the children's lives: They make their own decisions, and don't have chores or rules.
April 18, 2010
Three more lawsuits doomed to fail, three more bad child welfare systems likely to get worse
The group that so arrogantly calls itself "Children's Rights" has filed another one of its Mclawsuits against a state child welfare agency - this time in Massachusetts. And NCCPR's sources say that another such Mclawsuit, in Texas, is imminent.
Meanwhile a group which is unaffiliated with CR but has the same myopic outlook about how to fix child welfare systems, the National Center for Youth Law, has filed the same kind of suit in Nevada. All of these child welfare systems almost certainly are every bit as bad as CR and NCYL say they are.
NCCPR Child Welfare Blog
April 15, 2010
Mass. mother convicted of murder after four-year-old overdoses
A Plymouth County jury has found a Massachusetts mother, whose four-year-old daughter died after being given toxic levels of drugs prescribed to control her behavior, guilty of second-degree murder.
The case has raised disturbing questions about the apparent ease with which some parents can convince compliant physicians to diagnose and prescribe powerful psychotropic drugs for young children to help qualify for benefits. It also raised questions about whether some of these conditions can even be properly diagnosed in very young children.
February 10, 2010
H1N1 Vaccine Mistake: School Gets Insulin Instead Of Swine Flu Shot
When staff members at a Wellesley, Mass., school went to the nurse last Friday, they expected to be injected with a vaccine for theH1N1 flu. What they received instead was a shot of insulin resulting in a bout with low blood sugar.
Such errors have happened before. This past fall, a number of people in the neighboring town of Needham received a seasonal flu vaccine in place of the H1N1 vaccines they were supposed to receive. And in 2007, a teacher in the nearby town of Attleboro also received an injection of insulin instead of the intended flu shot.
January 19, 2010
Slaughterhouse recalls beef after E. coli test
ATHOL -- Adams Farm slaughterhouse has recalled about 2,574 pounds of beef products that may have been contaminated with E. coli, the company's business manager confirmed yesterday.
The voluntary recall was initiated after the state Department of Public Health confirmed that a ground beef sample positive for E. coli was collected during an epidemiological investigation Friday. An illness somewhere in the state prompted the testing, according to state and federal health officials.
Worcester Telegram & Gazette
January 13, 2010
Rebecca Riley parents could have separate trials
BROCKTON - For the first time, there's a possibility that Michael and Carolyn Riley could get separate trials. Three years after the Hull couple were arrested, the issue surfaced during a pretrial hearing Thursday in Plymouth Superior Court.
They're charged with first-degree murder in the December 2006 drug overdose death of their 4-year-old daughter Rebecca Riley. Prosecutors and defense lawyers are still battling over how much of the defendants' statements and other evidence will be allowed. Depending on how Judge Charles J. Hely rules on a set of motions, either side could ask for separate trials.
Wicked Local Hull
January 8, 2010
Cambridge woman is on a quest to find her long-lost cousin, Ashley
Born to a drug-addicted father and a mother she never got to know, Ashley Marie was put in foster care when she was just a toddler. But the Peek family thought of her as one of their own. They hoped to adopt her.
But one day in 1995, they say, the 7-year-old was abruptly taken from her foster family and placed with another family in parts unknown. The heartbroken Peeks, without even a chance to say goodbye, grieved as though she had died. Now, after nearly 15 years of wondering, Audra Peek has launched an all-out search for her long-lost cousin.
The Boston Globe
October 16, 2009
Cops jump on swine-flu power: Shots heard 'round the world
A "pandemic response bill" making its way through the Massachusetts legislature would allow authorities to forcefully quarantine citizens, compel health providers to vaccinate citizens, authorize forceful entry into private dwellings...
If citizens refuse to comply with isolation or quarantine orders in the event of a health emergency, they may be imprisoned for up to 30 days and fined $1,000 per day that the violation continues. "Pandemic Response Bill" 2028 was passed by the Massachusetts state Senate on April 28 and is now awaiting approval in the House.
World Net Daily
September 2, 2009
Lowell police find child locked in sweltering attic
Police officers found a naked 5-year-old boy locked in an airless attic where the temperature was over 100 degrees when they arrived at a home in Lowell Thursday, city police said.
The boy's 27-year-old mother is facing charges, her apartment has been condemned as unsanitary, and her four children have been taken away from her, police said today in a statement. Kristin Paquette pleaded not guilty today in Lowell District Court to charges of assault and battery on a child causing bodily injury and reckless endangerment of a child under 18.
The Boston Globe
July 31, 2009
Letter: School vouchers are constitutional
The religious freedom upon which our democracy was founded is in serious jeopardy. The closure of Calvary Christian School in Derry, N.H., as reported in Wednesday's Eagle-Tribune, is just one indication of this dire situation.
Throughout the country, the existence of religiously-affiliated educational institutions is threatened by the inability of taxpaying citizens to pay tuition. If education is mandatory in a state, a minimum amount of funding should be provided to all school-age children so that their parents, not the government, can decide where their children are taught.
July 28, 2009
Letter: Fathers, legal residents deserve equal treatment
Recently I saw an episode of the Dr. Phil where David Goldman, an American citizen, described how he is going through an arduous, time trying to bring his American-born son, Sean, back to America after he was abducted by his Brazilian wife (now deceased).
Sadly, Brazil does not have an extradition arrangement with the United States, allowing criminals to flee there without fear of being returned to the U.S. for punishment. In Goldman's case, his son is being held captive in Brazil by his Brazilian stepfather and the Brazilian government which refuses to give Sean back to his natural father.
The Salem News
June 15, 2009
Kids attend prom from 'sexual hell'
Family advocates are outraged by a prom held at Boston City Hall that was open to children apparently as young as 12 featuring crossdressers, homosexual heavy petting, suspected drug use and a leather-clad doorman who teaches sexual bondage classes.
"I remained in the building for an hour and a half and found the events inside disturbing, depraved and outright criminal," Max reported. "The line included kids wearing the rainbow regalia of the gay movement, teenage boys wearing dresses and high heels, hugging their 'boyfriends,' extremely young looking girls, not much older than 14 or 15, with 'Out and Proud' inscribed in rainbow letters on the front of their T-shirts."
World Net Daily
June 13, 2009
Another day -- and no verdict -- in 'Rockefeller' case - Local News Updates
A Suffolk Superior Court jury has concluded its deliberations for the day in the parental kidnapping trial of the man who calls himself Clark Rockefeller.
On Wednesday, the jury asked a judge what prosecutors had to prove in the case in which the defendant has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity. Judge Frank Gaziano told the jury that prosecutors had to prove that Rockefeller understood the legal and moral consequences when he kidnapped his 7-year-old daughter last summer after a bitter divorce.
The Boston Globe
June 11, 2009
Record-setting day for foster-care grads
As graduation season plays out all over Massachusetts, the state Department of Children and Families is celebrating its largest-ever class of graduates.
There are 601 youths in the state foster care system receiving a bachelor's degree, associate's degree, high school diploma, post-secondary vocational certificate or GED, according to state figures.
June 6, 2009
Homicide suspect incompetent to stand trial
QUINCY - A Chinese immigrant, who had been distraught and suicidal over her husband's alleged infidelity, was declared mentally incompetent yesterday.
The Norfolk district attorney's office is awaiting the final medical examiner's report to determine what additional charges will be filed against Chi Xue-fang, 38, in connection with the death of her fetus. Chi's 14-year-old daughter, is in foster care and attending a Quincy middle school.
The Boston Globe
May 20, 2009
Watertown, St. John's walk off DCU Center floor with state titles
WORCESTER - The 18-year-old Morrissey has been in foster care since he was a year old, and estimates he has been in "more than 10" different homes over that time.
At an early age, both found basketball in town to be a great release point for all of their stress. First, at the Boys and Girls club, and years later, at Casey Park.
The Boston Globe
March 22, 2009
Medication can't fix a broken childhood
ON ONE recent day in my pediatric practice, I saw or spoke with parents of eight children who had experienced a range of significant trauma. They were failing in school, impulsive, distracted, angry, and depressed.
What they all had in common was a diagnosis of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Each parent expected that I would either: refill the medication, change the medication, change the dose of medication, or have the medication given at a different time. When I suggested that medication alone was not the solution, I ran into walls.
The Boston Globe
January 26, 2009
2-year-old found alone in car in Revere
Revere police contacted the Department of Children and Families on Monday after a 2-year-old boy was found alone inside a car at a shopping center parking lot for 20 minutes, police said.
After medics examined the child he was released back to his mother's custody, but DCF was notified of the incident. According to Murphy, a computer check revealed the woman did not have a valid license and she was ticketed for unlicensed operation of a vehicle. The car was towed.
January 7, 2009
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