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In 2006, 509 children died nationwide, while living in foster care. (Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS) FY 2006)
National CPS News Archive
National News Coverage
Federal Way man arrested after son burns to death in backyard fire pit
by Leslie Anne Jones
A Federal Way man who said he fell asleep near a backyard fire pit and woke to find his infant son burned to death has been arrested for investigation of first-degree manslaughter.
Police were trying to determine what exactly led up to the 7-month-old's death, which was reported at 12:02 a.m. Sunday after the infant was pulled from the fire pit. Police said the baby suffered burns to his entire body.
The Seattle Times
June 25, 2008
Report blasts juvenile group-home care
by Jan Moller
Louisiana's oversight of private group homes for abused and neglected children is inadequate, and conditions are often abysmal in facilities that are charged with caring for some of the state's most vulnerable residents.
The litany of problems in group homes investigated by the Advocacy Center ranges from poorly trained staff and shoddy facilities to a failure to provide adequate medical and dental care. And the state rarely punishes homes that run afoul of state regulations.
June 24, 2008
O.C. mom spends '30 Days' in a different lifestyle
by Peter Larsen
It only takes Kati Blackledge a minute or two to make her stand perfectly clear on tonight's episode of "30 Days" on the FX network. "I believe that same-sex parenting just shouldn't be happening..."
Blackledge, herself an adopted child, as well as the mother to two adopted sons. And then to get the action going, she packs her bags to travel to Ann Arbor, Mich., where she'll live for 30 days with Dennis and Tom Patrick, a gay couple raising four adopted sons.
Orange County Register
June 23, 2008
Napolitano signs bill allowing access to child-welfare cases
by Amanda J. Crawford
The governor signed into law Tuesday a package of bills that will give the public and the media unprecedented access to records in child-welfare cases and state employee files.
The bills were crafted in the wake of legislative hearings on the deaths of three Tucson children involved with the state's Child Protective Services agency. The new laws make some court proceedings, CPS case records and employee disciplinary records available to the public.
The Arizona Republic
June 22, 2008
State's child-welfare system must do better by minority kids
by Cheryl Stephani
Last July, the General Accountability Office (GAO) released a national study that found that in 2004, African-American children were more than twice as likely to enter foster care as were white children.
The federal study also found that, on average, African-American children stayed in foster care about nine months longer. According to the study, Native-American children were also overrepresented in the foster-care system. Both groups also had poorer outcomes than their white peers.
The Seattle Times
June 19, 2008
Battered Twice?: Victims Offer Critique of Courts
by Bosede Adenekan
Convinced that Family Court proceedings do not adequately protect battered mothers and their children, a grassroots survivors' group is working to alter the court's ways - and has a new report to back up its call for change.
Members of the Brooklyn-based group Voices of Women Organizing Project (VOW) met with Family Court Administrative Judge Joseph Lauria recently to discuss their report, "Justice Denied: How Family Courts in NYC Endanger Battered Women and Children."
City Limits (NY)
June 14, 2008
30 years for child abuse
by Anita Miller
San Marcos -- Sara Amaya was sentenced to 30 years in jail on Friday after pleading guilty to 14 counts of child abuse.
The action marks the prosecutorial end of what investigators called the "worst case of child abuse" they had encountered and came just more than a month after Hays County jurors sentenced her former husband, Cesar Mojica, to 14 life terms.
San Marcos Record (TX)
June 13, 2008
Is Adoption Really a Christian Duty?
by Charlene Israel
Disaster, disease and neglect have put more than 143 million children in a desperate situation. The Burma cyclone and the China earthquake have left thousands of children orphaned in just a matter of days.
According to recent statistics, every fourteen seconds an AIDS related death takes a parent away from their children. Some 800,000 children pass through America's foster care system each year.
June 13, 2008
Teen tied to tree overnight dies
by Beau Minnick
A 13-year-old homeschooled boy was tied to a tree two nights this week died Thursday, and his father and stepmother have been charged with murder.
Brice Brian McMillan, 41, and Sandra Elizabeth McMillan, 36, both of Macclesfield, have been charged with first-degree murder and felony child abuse. They were being held Friday in the Edgecombe County Detention Center. A 7-year-old and a 9-year-old who live in the McMillan home have been placed in the custody of the Department of Social Services.
WRAL News (NC)
June 13, 2008
County wrestles with child deaths
by Donna Alvis-Banks and Shawna Morrison
County wrestles with child deaths Three fatalities have already occurred in fiscal year 2008 in Montgomery County.
Since 2006, four infants suffocated while sleeping, one toddler died after being left in a car and another toddler died after being shaken, according to Nisbet, director of the Montgomery County Department of Social Services.
The Roanoke Times (VA)
June 12, 2008
Should village really be raising the child?
by Kelley Curran
The Indy Star reported the death of 7-week-old Destiny Linden. Destiny had been taken by the Department of Child Services because her mother had refused to pursue charges against a man who had allegedly assaulted her. The child died in foster care.
According to the Star, Destiny was the fourth child in seven months in Marion County to die while under the agency's supervision. The Web site kidjacked.com lists hundreds of children who have died after being taken from their parents. Some studies have concluded that regardless of what situation a child is in, their risk of being seriously harmed increased when they are removed from their homes.
News and Tribune (IN)
June 10, 2008
NPR: Where the birth parent-bashing never stops
Every time I think the folks at National Public Radio can't sink any lower, they manage to surprise me.
On Friday, 'All Things Considered' devoted three segments to foster care. Reporter Michelle Trudeau's first sentence of her first story began with a false allegation against hundreds of thousands of families, presented as fact. Without even the pretense of attribution, Trudeau said: "A child is placed in foster care only as a last resort, when parental maltreatment or neglect is extreme and unremitting."
NCCPR Child Welfare Blog
June 8, 2008
How US state goverments harm children they seek to protect
by Dan Weaver
On October 8, 2004, Montgomery County took my daughter away from me, and I entered the surreal and hitherto unknown world of Family Court, Social Services, lawyers, foster care, Child Preventive Services and Child Protective Services (CPS).
I got my daughter back eight months later and have spent the last year trying to undo the damage that was done to her while in the county's care. While at Northeast Parent & Child Society's Children's Home in Schenectady, New York, where the county placed her, she learned to smoke marijuana and steal cold medicine to get high, among other things.
June 5, 2008
Texas Raids Prompt Renewed Calls for CPS Reform
by Brad Dacus
The Texas Supreme Court declared last week that the state's Department of Family Protective Services (CPS) acted illegally in rounding up hundreds of mothers and children from a suspected polygamist sect.
But while national attention has focused on the bizarre events in Texas, attorneys across the nation insist that abuses of power by many states' child protective services - referred to collectively as CPS - are all too common, and little has been done by legislators to address them.
Pacific Justice Institute
June 3, 2008
FDLE: Child Welfare Caseworker Logged Visits He Didn't Make
by Howard Altman
TAMPA - A child welfare caseworker was arrested this morning and charged with 33 counts of falsifying records, according to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.
Andrew Joseph, 36, of Riverview, said he conducted face-to-face interviews for Youth and Family Alternatives, a subcontractor providing case management services, according Hillsborough Kids Inc. Chief Executive Officer Jeff Rainey.
June 2, 2008
Sect children allowed to go home
by Kendra Mendez
More than 400 children seized from the West Texas polygamist camp will be reunited with their parents Monday, several from an Austin shelter.
San Angelo judge Barbara Walther signed the order allowing parents to pick up their children from shelters across the state, beginning at 10 a.m. and ending at 8 p.m. Monday. Parents must agree to certain conditions when they retrieve their children from the shelters.
News 8 Austin
June 2, 2008
Advocate: DFCS worker didn't do enough for toddler
by Craig Schneider
The Georgia Child Advocate said Monday that a state caseworker did not thoroughly investigate prior injuries to a child who was returned to her home and killed last week.
Child Advocate Tom Rawlings said his preliminary review of the death of 16-month-old Amiya Brown raised "serious questions" about the handling of the case by the Fulton County office of the state Division of Family and Children Services.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (GA)
June 2, 2008
Sexually abused girls bond at special camp
by Gracie Bonds Staples
It was midday, and another group therapy session had begun at Camp CADI in Rutledge, a retreat designed to foster confidence in sexually abused girls and help them find their voice through music, dance, drama and storytelling.
As far as Barth knows, CADI, held annually on the property of Camp Twin Lakes about 45 minutes east of Atlanta, is the only camp of its kind in the state, maybe in the nation. Camp CADI combines camp activities such as horseback riding with creative arts such as storytelling and photography.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (GA)
June 1, 2008
Not Special: Support Alex Barton
Alex Barton is five years old. On Wednesday, his kindergarten teacher decided to teach her class a bit about bigotry and exclusion.
Unfortunately, she seems to have been for rather than against these principles. Wendy Portillo invited the members of Alex's class to state the reasons they did not like him. Then a vote was taken. By a vote of 14 to 2, Barton was removed from the class.
Asperger Square 8
May 29, 2008
Kindergartner Voted Out By Students, Outraged Mom Of Special Needs Son Talks Exclusively With The Early Show
by Harry Smith
A Florida mom is outraged and considering legal action after her special needs son was voted out of his kindergarten class.
Melissa Barton says Morningside Elementary teacher Wendy Portillo had her son's classmates say what they didn't like about 5-year-old Alex. She says the teacher then had the students vote, and voted Alex, who is being evaluated for Asperger's syndrome -- an autism spectrum disorder -- out of the class by a 14-2 margin.
CBS News (FL)
May 29, 2008
State faces new sore point over immunizing sect children
by Terri Langford and Lisa Sandberg
A state requirement that children in foster care be inoculated against disease has prompted another round of headaches for lawyers who represent 464 children taken from a polygamist ranch last month.
Most children are immunized against diseases including chicken pox, polio, measles and smallpox before they start school. But many, if not most of the children of the Yearning For Zion ranch, have not been immunized. All are homeschooled on the 1,700-acre ranch north of Eldorado.
May 28, 2008
Mom blames NYC for girl's death
by Tom Murse
Lancaster woman seeks $50M after child, 6, dies in foster care. Michelle Gochenaur was fighting to bring her 6-year-old daughter home to Lancaster.
The 28-year-old says she cleaned up her life since losing Taylor Webster to a foster family while serving a two-month prison term in 2002. But just days before her open-adoption case was to be heard in New York last week, Gochenaur got the phone call she never expected. Her little girl was dead.
Lancaster Intelligencer Journal
May 27, 2008
A Lifeline for Students Left Behind
by Jack Stripling
Nina Williams doesn't even remember when she entered the foster care system, and at the age of 18 she says she has little interest in learning exactly what put her there.
Now a student at Western Michigan University, Williams has other concerns, like student loans and textbook costs. When Williams came to WMU - a university in Kalamazoo, Mich. - she says she felt like an outcast. One of just seven students on campus who grew up in foster homes, Williams formed friendships that were built in part on mutual frustrations.
Inside Higher Ed
May 27, 2008
DSS makes a federal case of an orphan's house
by Lorraine Ahearn
When foster kids hit the magic age of 18 and typically leave the government-issue nest of the system to fly solo in an adult world, Guilford County wants to help them.
Remember John? He's the unnamed orphan whose adoptive father died, leaving the child a small Habitat for Humanity house in east Greensboro - plus a $538 a month death benefit, more than enough to pay the $221 mortgage. Even so, John's legal guardian - the DSS - kept the full $538 to help defray his upkeep in foster care. That left the mortgage on the vacant home unpaid and on the brink of foreclosure.
May 26, 2008
Police: 3-year-old was never missing
by Mike Charbonneau
Smithfield -- Unanswered questions surround the Amber Alert case of a 3-year-old, including the child's name and whereabouts, after authorities said the child never disappeared from a Smithfield flea market.
State authorities issued the Amber Alert on Sunday after Thomason reported the boy missing from Brightleaf Flea Market. She said she had been putting produce in her car, and when she looked up, he was gone. The Amber Alert was canceled at 12:27 a.m. Tuesday after the boy was found.
WRAL News (NC)
May 20, 2008
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