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African-American children are over four times more likely than Caucasian children to be placed in out-of-home care.

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California CPS News Archive

California News Coverage

by Mark Glover

Record numbers of Californians are apparently putting financial concerns aside and are determined to travel over the holidays.

AAA Northern California on Monday predicted that about 11.7 million Golden State residents will travel 50 miles or more during the end-of-year holiday season - a nearly 2 percent increase over 2011 and the highest number of end-of-year holiday travelers ever.

December 17, 2012

by Theresa Leschmann

Charlie Sheen's ex-wife Brooke Mueller is telling friends and anyone who will listen that the L.A. County Dept. of Children and Family Services came barging into her home just hours after she returned from the hospital.

After six hours of searching, all the investigators found was a stray cigarette butt on the floor of the master bedroom. They questioned her about whether or not she smoked in the house when the children were home. Her reply indicated that she smokes in her bathroom but only with the windows open.

December 12, 2012

by Melissa Lewelling

It's someone's 18th birthday today, but instead of cake and presents they might have to leave home with nowhere else to go. Every year foster youth 'age out' of the system, facing a high possibility of homelessness.

More than 500,000 kids are currently in foster care across the U.S. - with 100,000 in California alone, according to Kern County's Department of Public Health and Human Services, which oversees the health care program for foster kids in the southern part of California's Central Valley.

December 3, 2012

Though there are still quite a few absentee, mail-in and provisional ballots left to be counted, it appears as though California's Proposition 37, the genetically-engineered foods labeling initiative, has indeed failed to pass by a very narrow margin.

If even half of the nearly six million Californians that voted in favor of Prop. 37 decided to stop purchasing the following "natural" and organic food brands, all of which are owned by companies that spent millions to defeat Prop. 37, the financial damage incurred by these corporate traitors would be significant enough to send the message that the people want to know, and have a right to know, whether or not the foods they eat contain genetically-modified organisms (GMOs).

November 27, 2012

by Jen Heger

The L.A. County Department of Child Protective Services will be formally re-opening an abuse investigation involving Halle Berry and Gabriel Aubry's daughter, Nahla, following the Thanksgiving brawl.

"Detectives from the LAPD formally contacted CPS after Gabe's arrest, because Nahla was present when the fight occurred," a source close to the situation tells Radar exclusively.

November 26, 2012

by Tracey Taylor

Concerns about mountain lions prowling the Berkeley hills are mounting with new reported sightings and the posting of signs alerting local residents to their possible presence.

On Thursday Nov. 15, UC Berkeley police received unconfirmed information of a mountain lion sighting near Building 26 at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL). UCPD conducted a search of the area and was unable to locate any signs of mountain lion activity or presence.

November 18, 2012

by Kimi Yoshino

A Stockton woman was arrested Monday after she allegedly kidnapped the infant daughter from an unsupervised visit at the Child Protective Services offices, authorities said.

Stockton police say Shantesha Fluker, 31, does not have legal custody of her daughter. She was at the office Monday morning when she walked out of the office with her 1-month-old daughter, authorities said.

November 13, 2012

by Jen Heger

Officials from the Los Angeles County Child Protective Services are planning on visiting Nadya "Octo-Mom" Suleman's house in Palmdale, Calif. yet again, after someone made an anonymous call to the agency.

"Social workers from DCFS will be visiting Nadya's Palmdale home this week to do a welfare check," a source close to the situation tells Radar. "Officials are trying to get a hold of Nadya and speak to her, but have so far been unable to reach her. Under the law anytime someone makes a report about a child being in either physical or emotional danger an investigation will be launched and a visit to the home is legally required. Social workers will most likely want to speak to all 14 children individually."

November 8, 2012

by 60 Minutes Overtime

A defense psychologist has testified that a boy charged with killing his neo-Nazi father was subjected to an intense history of abuse, which began shortly after his birth and continued for a decade.

At 4:02 a.m. on a May morning last year, 10-year-old Joseph Hall allegedly pointed his family's .357 Magnum at his father's ear and pulled the trigger. Jeff Hall, a rising star in America's largest neo-Nazi group, died instantly. As Joseph, now 12 years old, goes to trial in California, new details have emerged about the boy's history of abuse at the hands of his father. As reported by the Riverside Press-Enterprise, defense psychologist Robert Geffen testified yesterday that the boy was sexually abused, beaten with a belt, and forced to eat from the floor. Geffen also said that Child Protective Services was involved in the case, making contact with the boy almost two dozen times.

November 8, 2012

What do the Middle Ages, microorganisms, mathematics and music have in common? Andrea Sharp, coordinator of Summit Charter Academy Homeschool, answers the question.

"These subjects are part of our new enrichment classes which include history, geography, science lab, choir, writing, reading and mathematics," Sharp said. "Our vision is to help our students' brains engage and hearts thrive. We believe a life-long love of learning is developed when teachers and parents actively work together. The cultivation of our children's intelligence, creativity and strong character is our top priority."

November 8, 2012

While serving a warrant at a home in Grover Beach, deputies discovered a 2-year-old living in deplorable conditions and placed the child with child protective services.

The house on the 100 block of Park View Avenue has been deemed uninhabitable by the county. On Thursday, San Luis Obispo Sheriff detectives found varying amounts of heroin, methamphetamine, marijuana, prescription pills and more than 30 used hypodermic needles along with other items of drug paraphernalia.

November 4, 2012

by Will Evans

The companies that make those candy bars leftover from Halloween don't want Californians to be spooked by scary tales of "Frankenfoods." The Hershey Co., - makers of Butterfinger, Kit Kat and Sand Snickers bars - gave a combined $367,000 last month.

They are just a few of the major food and biotechnology companies that have poured more than $44 million into the fight against Prop. 37. Proponents of the measure, who have raised $7.3 million from donors - including a controversial alternative health website and organic food companies - argue that consumers have a right to know what's in their food and point out that some countries already require such labels.

November 2, 2012

by Marcy Franklin

What's in a label? A guide to understanding what natural, organic, free-range, hormone-free...really mean. From meat to dairy, produce to pasta, food labels tout all sorts of claims that probably shouldn't be taken at face value.

Organic: A USDA organic seal is the highest stamp of organic approval. Technically speaking, this label ensures that the product is produced without synthetic fertilizers, sewage sludge, irradiation, and genetic engineering. Any product with an "organic," "100 percent organic," or "made with organic [ingredient here]" label is certified by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). For those products made from less than 70 percent organic ingredients, the manufacturer must identify which specific ingredients are organic - but those products don't get to boast the official seal of approval. The USDA organic standards also prohibit antibiotics and growth hormones in organic meats and poultry, and require 100 percent organic feed for livestock.

November 1, 2012

by Rob Lyons

Voters in the Golden State will have their hands full on 6 November. Not only will they have to deal with the small matter of helping to choose a new Leader of the Free World...

The proposed law is backed by organic food producers, the Californian Democratic Party and the Green Party among others. One of Prop 37's leading supporters is Joseph Mercola, a Chicago osteopath who runs the self-proclaimed 'World's #1 Natural Health Website', There you can even pick up a copy of Genetic Roulette, a DVD explaining the dangers of genetically engineered (GM) food: 'When the US government ignored repeated warnings by its own scientists and allowed untested genetically modified crops into our environment and food supply, it was a gamble of unprecedented proportions. The health of all living things and all future generations were put at risk by an infant technology. After two decades, physicians and scientists have uncovered a grave trend. The same serious health problems found in lab animals, livestock, and pets that have been fed GM foods are now on the rise in the US population. And when people and animals stop eating genetically modified organisms (GMOs), their health improves.'

November 1, 2012

by Sean Janssen

A Twain Harte-based environmental group filed an appeal Tuesday to a decision by the Stanislaus National Forest to approve expansion plans for the Bear Valley Mountain Resort.

The Central Sierra Environmental Resource Center is challenging the Sept. 21 finding of Forest Supervisor Susan Skalski that an environmental assessment shows no significant impact as a result of the expansion plans. The plan calls for the addition of two lifts to provide service between Bear Valley Village and the resort, an increased daily capacity of 810 people.

October 31, 2012

by Michelle Cole

A 10-year-old girl is found dead in a footlocker in Arizona and police learn her family had been under investigation by child welfare authorities in Utah.

A teenager is murdered in Eugene, leaving a trail of questions from Sacramento to Salem about who failed to protect her. A baby spends its vital first year with a stranger in Alabama foster care while relatives in Oregon wait for word that they can raise the child.

October 27, 2012

A Los Gatos chiropractor wishes to make area residents aware of a technology that can yield important information about their body composition and point them toward better health and wellness practices.

According to Dr. Judy McGrain of McGrain Chiropractic, a technique known as BIA (Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis) Assessment uses digital calculating technology and electrical sensors to determine the ratio of fatty tissue versus lean tissue.

October 22, 2012

by Bob Williams

A contentious proposition, Proposition 37, appears on the ballot mailed last week to California voters. Proposition 37, if passed, will require raw and processed foods in grocery stores to be clearly labeled if they are genetically modified.

Proponents say that buyers have the right to know what is in the food they buy. This is quite reasonable. They also allege in the text of the proposition, "Such genetic engineering can increase the levels of known toxicants in foods and introduce new toxicants and health concerns." This implies that some GM crops that have been approved for use have shown harmful health effects. This is not so. This proposition can also affect what is sold in grocery stores as well as the cost of food. All of these things need to be considered by voters.

October 15, 2012

by John Wildermuth

The century-old battle over the Hetch Hetchy Reservoir moves to the San Francisco ballot next month with a measure that could determine the future of the system that has provided the city's water since 1934.

Proposition F would require the city to put together a plan to destroy the city-owned O'Shaughnessy Dam and drain Hetch Hetchy Reservoir so that the valley, part of Yosemite National Park, can be restored to its original wild state. The city also would spend up to $8 million to find ways to replace the reservoir's water storage capacity, prepare new renewable energy sources to replace the lost hydroelectric power and upgrade the city's water conservation efforts.

October 15, 2012

by Jessica Mullins

We've outlined the differences between a mountain lion and a bobcat and how rare it is to see a cougar, but here's information on how to avoid mountain lions and what to do if you actually encounter one.

Local wildlife officials have told Patch there are probably only two to three mountain lions in all of Marin and, while it's extremely unlikely to encounter one, it can happen. First, if you see a mountain lion, make sure it's really a mountain lion. Last week we highlighted the differences between mountain lions and bobcats, which are frequently incorrectly reported as mountain lions.

October 13, 2012

Orange County prosecutors today declined to file criminal charges stemming from a child-neglect probe of Nadya Suleman, who became known in the media as ''Octomom'' after she gave birth to octuplets in 2009.

"We received the case this morning and, based on the investigation by La Habra police, we found insufficient evidence that anyone committed a crime in that home," said Susan Kang Schroeder, chief of staff for Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas.

October 13, 2012

by Grier King

According to Ventura County Children and Family Services, more than 40 female foster youth are in need of such housing each year.

Alice's House gives a home to three such girls, and Camarillo's Casa Pacifica has also just welcomed three young women, as well as one young man, with its newly launched program, Stepping Stones.

October 11, 2012

Kern County has earned some mixed results when it comes to children's welfare. That's according to a new report released Tuesday by Children Now, a nationwide child advocacy group.

The report ranks 28 different indicators of children's well-being, ranging from the care of newborns to school performance. According to the report, Kern County ranks in the bottom third of performance on 14 different indicators, the middle third on ten indicators and the top third in four indicators that measure children's well-being.

October 9, 2012

SAN JOSE - Notes taken by a former principal accused of failing to report suspected sexual abuse at her California elementary school reveal that a teacher who was later charged with molesting children in class blindfolded a second-grade girl.

The notes were previously sealed but were released by a Santa Clara County judge after the newspaper filed a state Public Records Act request with the Evergreen School District. Other documents showed that tests by the county crime lab found semen on chairs in Chandler's classroom. Chandler, 35, was arrested in January and remains jailed as he awaits trial this month on five counts of lewd and lascivious acts on a child under age 14. He has pleaded not guilty.

October 5, 2012

by Andrew Lu

A mother of two was sentenced to 180 days in jail because her kids missed more than ten percent of school under California truancy laws.

As if the California penal system was not overtaxed enough, now bad parenting can land you in jail just the same as murdering someone or robbing a bank. Thirty-four-year-old Lorraine Cuevas is one of the first parents in the state to be convicted under the relatively new law. Her two children (one in second grade, and one in third grade) missed a total of 116 days of school last year, reports Fox News. The superintendent of King County Schools said that, "We take attendance very seriously, and we want our kids to be in school," reports Fox News. Yeah, no kidding.

October 5, 2012

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