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The highest ranking federal official in charge of foster care, Wade Horn of the DHHS, is a former child psychologist who says the foster care system is a giant mess and should just be blown up.
National CPS News Archive
National News Coverage
Rift widens over First Nations child welfare agency in Chilliwack
Divisions in the Sto:lo community over governance of the local aboriginal child and family services agency show no signs of healing.
Last week Sto:lo Tribal Council (STC) Grand Chief Doug Kelly said the designated agency, Fraser Valley Aboriginal Children and Family Services Society (FVACFSS), was "out of control," and he was given a mandate by STC chiefs to make the agency accountable.
October 1, 2014
Who's watching the kids when parents get arrested?
The Justice Department and police officials across the nation are directing their agencies to deal with thousands of children who are left behind following the arrests of parents, from surprise raids at family homes to roadside traffic stops.
Few law enforcement agencies have policies that specifically address the continuing care of children after such arrests, despite an estimated 1.7 million children who have at least one parent in prison, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics. The number of children jumps to about 2.7 million when parents detained in local jails are included.
July 31, 2014
GOP Senators Want to Give Religious Adoption Agencies 'License to Discriminate'
A new piece of legislation introduced by two Republican U.S. Senators would effectively guarantee that any religiously based child-welfare services can refuse to place children with same-sex couples, without fear of losing federal funding.
The "Child Welfare Provider Inclusion Act" was introduced Wednesday by Wyoming Sen. Mike Enzi and Pennsylvania Sen. Mike Kelly, both of whom are Republicans. Zack Ford at ThinkProgress keenly notes that while the bill is positioned as an effort to protect faith-based institutions that provide child welfare services from placing children with families that don't meet the organization's religious standards, what it actually does is force the federal government to continue contracting with faith-based groups that flout federal nondiscrimination policies.
July 31, 2014
Every Child in Scotland to Be Supervised by State-Appointed Busybody
Imagine the very worst home a child could grow up in: No food in the fridge, parents strung out on drugs, the children covered with scabs and beaten regularly. You would want someone to step in and save the kids.
And then there's Scotland. Scotland wants to treat all families as potentially abusive and appoint a "named person" (that is, a guardian) as soon as the child is born and up through age 18 to oversee the parenting. This "shadow parent" would be empowered by the government under the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act, which will take effect in 2016.
June 30, 2014
Vaccination is 'ending badger cull', claims the Badger Trust's Dominic Dyer
The roll-out of Government-backed badger vaccination programmes to tackle the spread of bovine tuberculosis spells the beginning of the end of badger culling a leading opponent has claimed.
Dominic Dyer, chief executive of the Badger Trust, made the statement after what he described as a: "ground-breaking" meeting on Tuesday in which Farming Minister George Eustice met a wide range of wildlife and farming groups.
June 27, 2014
Judge Says Constitution Doesn't Exempt Religious from Vaccination Requirements
A federal district judge in Brooklyn rules that a New York City policy of keeping non-vaccinated children out of school during exposure risk does not violate constitutional rights.
Immunization rates among school-aged children have dropped significantly in the last two decades. The decline is directly attributable to the misguided fears about the safety of vaccinations, a belief started by thoroughly debunked research which linked vaccines to the rise in autism. Schools have always required children to be up to date on their vaccinations when enrolling. Exemptions are allowed for those with documented medical reasons, as well as religious beliefs. While these exemptions are still rare, the increase in religious (and in some states personal belief) exemptions have led to a precipitous decline in vaccinated children. It has also led to a public health crisis of major outbreaks of vaccine preventable diseases.
June 26, 2014
B.C. judge blasts father who tried to bully daughter in lying after four of his children put in foster care
KAMLOOPS - A B.C. judge had harsh words for a man who tried to intimidate his daughter into lying in court after four of his children were taken into foster care due to "deplorable" living conditions.
Harrison noted the ongoing care of Batke's 23-year-old disabled son as an exceptional circumstance that kept the man from spending time behind bars. Instead, Batke, 49, was sentenced to a four-month term of house arrest and one year of probation after pleading guilty to one count of attempting to pervert, defeat or obstruct justice.
June 25, 2014
Boy who 'cannot play' to remain in foster care
A TWO-and-a-half year old boy, for whose welfare Swindon Council is responsible, must stay in foster care while decisions are made about his future, a family court judge has ruled.
Judge Katharine Marshall questioned whether the boy was being adequately stimulated after a nurse said he "appeared to be unable to actually play". The nurse said the boy's mother had told her that "she cannot be bothered to play" with the child and "only gets toys out when professionals visit".
June 24, 2014
Grieving foster carer tackles legal rights after infant's death
A parent who has been grieving the loss of her foster child says foster parents should have more legal rights when a child dies.
Monica Perrett was fostering her three-month-old nephew Finn when he died last month and now has taken her case up with the South Australian Government, emerging hopeful after a meeting in Adelaide. The law in South Australia excludes foster parents from involvement in the funeral or being listed on the death certificate.
June 12, 2014
Rise in home schooling spurs parliamentary inquiry
Up to three times as many children are home schooled in NSW than the state government knows about, prompting the state's first parliamentary inquiry into why parents abandon the education system.
The latest figures show 3194 children registered for home schooling in NSW, a rise of almost 400 students in just one year. In the past four years, the number of children taught at home has risen 40 per cent.
June 1, 2014
Irish children to determine whether parents are fit to homeschool?
Artillery for the Northern Ireland government's takeover of homeschooling, stockpiled by the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC), is being set to usurp the power of parents and hand it over to children and the state.
If the U.N.-based policy is implemented, government assessors will be directed to obtain the "opinion of the child" in order to determine whether homeschool parents are fit to teach their own. Donnelly warns that the U.N.-crafted policy that's routed to take shape in Northern Ireland is something in which nations abroad should be very concerned.
May 31, 2014
Helsinki child welfare in crisis
Helsinki child welfare services are in turmoil. Around 70 per cent of child welfare workers have signed an official letter, which states that the services are now making decisions on clients' cases without thorough knowledge of their circumstances.
In the letter, drawn up in March, welfare workers criticise the management of child welfare services for a policy under which care placement decisions are made by a steering group without meeting the child. The letter also expresses concern over the inadequacy of child protection resources. In Helsinki, one social worker is responsible for around 40 children, with the figure set to go up as the city's population grows.
May 17, 2014
Feds Eye New Measures for Child Welfare Reviews
The Department of Health and Human Services is amending its Child and Family Services Review (CSFR) process, including the addition of a few key measurements.
The CFSR process, which began during the Bush administration, includes a litany of metrics and case studies created to gauge the performance and progress of state child welfare agencies. In a nutshell: every state is reviewed over a four-year period, and notified of indicators on which they failed.
May 17, 2014
Number On Child Protection Register Drops
The number of children listed on the Child Protection Register in Northern Ireland fell by 2% over the year to 31 March 2014, according to the latest figures released by the Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety.
At 31 March this year, 1,914 children were listed on the Child Protection Register in Northern Ireland, indicating a drop over the year of 2% from 1,961. Changes by Trust range from a decrease of 15% in the Belfast Trust to an increase of 12% in the Western Trust.
May 15, 2014
FBI: 100s have contacted us about pedophile case
Hundreds of people have contacted the FBI about a teacher suspected of drugging and molesting boys during a four-decade career at international schools on four continents, greatly expanding the potential number of suspected victims.
The FBI said last month that William Vahey had molested at least 90 boys, whose photos were found on a memory drive stolen by his maid. The bureau said Tuesday that it has now "been contacted by several hundred individuals from around the globe wishing either to reach out as potential victims or provide information in the ongoing investigation." Vahey killed himself at age 64 after evidence of molestation was found on a memory drive stolen by a maid in Nicaragua.
May 13, 2014
Warrants prevent Lev Tahor from heading to Central America
LONDON -- An ultra-orthodox Jewish sect can not leave Canada for Central America because Quebec's child welfare agency still has warrants outstanding to apprehend all 129 kids in the Lev Tahor community, their lawyer says.
Immigration lawyer Guidy Mamann said it wasn't known until two weeks ago that the Quebec department of youth protection obtained a court order to apprehend all the children --not just the 14 who were subject to child protection proceedings in Quebec and Ontario --who fled Ste. Agathe-des-Monts, Quebec last fall for Chatham.
May 13, 2014
Four arrested as police find missing toddler Lola safe after she vanished when her mother visited her in foster care
The teenage mother of a one-year-old girl in foster care who went missing during a supervised visit has been arrested on suspicion of kidnap after the child was found safe and well, police said today.
Little Lola Page, 13 months, was found with her mother, Stacey Ball, 18, at an address in Willenhall, near Walsall in the West Midlands at 1am today, police said. The child had been missing since Friday lunchtime, when she disappeared during a visit by her mother to the foster family she had been living with.
March 18, 2014
Nurse who took 911 call testifies on foster baby's death
More testimony was heard Wednesday in the second-degree murder trial of a Gillam man accused of killing his infant foster son.
Court heard from nurse Diana Lynn White who said she took a frantic call from the foster father in November 2008. Cameron Ouskan, 13 months old at the time, was rushed to a hospital in Gillam. "He was in very poor condition. He wasn't breathing on his own," said White. "He was also covered in vomit."
January 22, 2014
The Post-GMO Economy
One mainstream farmer is returning to conventional seed - and he's not alone. Staring at a future of lower corn prices and higher inputs, Huegerich decided to experiment. Two years ago, he planted 320 acres of conventional corn and 1,700 with GMO corn.
To his delight, the conventional fields yielded 15 to 30 more bushels per acre than the GMO fields, with a profit margin of up to $100 more per acre. Hugerich Isn't the only farmer retreating from GMO seeds. In pockets across the nation, commodity growers are becoming fed up with traits that don't work like they used to. Not only are the seeds expensive (GMO corn can cost $150 more per bag than conventional corn), they're also driving farmers to buy and apply more chemicals. During the growing season, Huegerich sprays both his conventional and his GMO corn twice with herbicides and twice with pesticides, despite the GMO's theoretical resistance to rootworm. "It gives me peace of mind," Huegerich says. Between 2001 and 2010, the consumer advocacy group Food & Water Watch reports, total on-farm herbicide use increased 26 percent as weed resistance grew. Today, 61.2 million acres of cropland, including many of Huegerich's, are plagued by glyphosate-resistant weeds.
December 6, 2013
INQUEST: Grandma who starved boy to death denies responsibility
TORONTO A woman convicted of fatally starving her five-year-old grandson is denying responsibility for his death. Elva Bottineau began her testimony today at a coroner's inquest into the death of Jeffrey Baldwin.
Bottineau is serving a life sentence with no chance of parole for 22 years for second-degree murder. Her testimony at the coroner's inquest began with coroner's counsel Jill Witkin reminding her that she is not allowed to undermine the findings of fact that the courts have made against her.
December 5, 2013
Delays in state funding putting orphans at ris
Delays in the provision of funding to non-profit organisations by the Department of Social Development were putting children at risk, said Bongani Khumalo, acting chairman of the Financial and Fiscal Commission, in a report released yesterday.
Khumalo said NPOs were facing severe financial pressure because of the increase in the demand for child welfare services and delays in payments by the government. "If [the delay in money transfers to NPOs] is happening it means that somebody somewhere is not getting the services that they are supposed to be getting; so yes, we could say that the children are suffering," Khumalo said.
October 1, 2013
Dead body case raises questions about children's welfare
A Hamilton crisis support worker says he believes six children who lived for months with their father's decaying corpse in their house have been traumatized by the experience.
But if the family didn't reach out for help and neighbours didn't alert social agencies, there was no way for those agencies to intervene, says Peter Kibor, director of the Good Shepherd's Barrett Centre for Crisis Support. The six children slipped through the hands of Hamilton's Children's Aid Society, which was notified of the bizarre situation too late: the family had moved on.
September 21, 2013
Antibiotics Used to Make Livestock More Profitable May Be Killing Us
That the overuse of antibiotics by Americans is leading to more strains of bacteria that are antibiotic resistant is widely accepted. There are many reasons for this including over prescription by physicians, over marketing by pharmaceutical firms.
The European Union has already banned most large scale antibiotic use in livestock raised for human consumption. But in the United States, Big Pharma and the farm industry have successfully fought off protecting human life by keeping the FDA and Congress from imposing serious limits. In fact, the FDA -- in 2012 -- only asked that farmers voluntary cut back on the profligate use of antibiotics.
September 20, 2013
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