Legally Kidnapped

Shattering Your Child Welfare Delusions Since 2007


Tuesday, June 19, 2018

The Irish Times view on child welfare: Insights into State failings

When the interests of service providers take precedence over the rights and needs of their clients, public trust is undermined. This divergence in priorities took dramatic form in the CervicalCheck scandal. But its effects on the lives of vulnerable adolescents, as outlined in successive reports by the Ombudsman for Children Niall Muldoon, have yet to be addressed.

Muldoon’s frustration over the sub-standard services being provided by the HSE to suicidal children comes though in his annual report. He itemises a shortfall in the number of consultant psychiatrists; the persistence of nine-to-five service contracts and an absence of out-of-hours emergency care in seven counties. Poor administration is not confined to medical care. An Oireachtas committee was told on Wednesday that psychiatric services in Wexford and Waterford would be withdrawn because of resignations arising from unsafe working conditions and outdated buildings.

More >> The Irish Times view on child welfare: Insights into State failings

Monday, June 18, 2018

Study: Utah, other Republican-majority states give dads less custody time

Divorced dads in Republican-majority states receive significantly less custody time than those in Democrat-majority states and swing states, according to a new study.

More >> Study: Utah, other Republican-majority states give dads less custody time

Plagued by problems, Ohio’s child support system is set for sweeping reforms. Here’s what would change.

Ohio’s child support system, plagued with an outdated formula used to calculate payments, $100 million a year in unpaid support and non-custodial parents who slip into the underground economy to avoid wage garnishments, may soon get its most sweeping reform in decades.

The impact of newly-passed legislation on families will vary based on factors such as income, health care coverage, child care arrangements and more.

More >> Plagued by problems, Ohio’s child support system is set for sweeping reforms. Here’s what would change.

Parents' horror after man 'posing as social worker tries to kidnap their 10-month-old son'

A couple have warned other parents to be on guard after a man claiming to be a social worker allegedly tried to kidnap their 10-month-old son.

Sharnice Dwyer and Lee Hart said the man started staring through their home's windows in Sutton-in-Ashfield, Nottinghamshire, yesterday morning.

More >> Parents' horror after man 'posing as social worker tries to kidnap their 10-month-old son'

The other missing children scandal: Thousands of lost American foster kids

The public exploded in outrage at the news in April: Federal agencies had lost track of nearly 1,500 migrant children. These were kids who had shown up at the border unaccompanied, most of them from Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, and were placed with sponsors. But the Office of Refugee Resettlement was unable to determine the current whereabouts of 1,475 of the 7,635 children who had been placed last year. Members of Congress said the children had been thrown to the wolves; they held rallies. Twitter groaned under the anger of thousands of users who expressed shock that this had been allowed to happen, many of them mistakenly noting that these kids had been taken from their parents.

More >> The other missing children scandal: Thousands of lost American foster kids


Family court judges face the wrath of unhappy litigants and legislators

Family court judges in Connecticut have come under attack in recent years by unhappy litigants, some of whom have resorted to threats of violence and anti-semitic and racist Internet posts.

The 25 to 30 judges who preside each year over 50,000 cases, including divorces and child custody/visitation disputes, have also faced intense scrutiny by lawmakers during confirmation hearings, despite steps Judicial Branch leaders say they've taken to reduce costs, conflict and delays in family court cases.

More >> Family court judges face the wrath of unhappy litigants and legislators

Two foster children speak out about leaving home they love

That routine could change Friday, when a Grand Traverse Band Tribal Court judge could decide to move the children, who are part Native American, into a foster home with a tribal member they've met twice.

If the girls have their say they'll stay put, with Tim and Anne Donn, who have been their foster parents for the past nine years.

More >> Two foster children speak out about leaving home they love

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Seal of confession more important than reporting child abuse: Priest



Priests shouldn’t be forced break the seal of confession to report instances of child sexual abuse, according to Sydney priest Michael Whelan.

Whelan told the ABC the government’s decision to order the Catholic Church to lift the veil of secrecy applied to church-goers and their priests was in conflict with the church’s religious principles.

More >> Seal of confession more important than reporting child abuse: Priest

Mississippi man charged in incident with Mobile girls in foster care



Authorities say a Mississippi man picked up five girls ages 11-16 from foster care in Mobile last weekend and drove them to Ocean Springs, where police found them under the influence of drugs.

More >> Mississippi man charged in incident with Mobile girls in foster care
CPS likes to rub it in our faces and use this day to tout their cause by highlighting a foster parent or a dad who adopted a child from the system

More >> How to use Fathers Day as CPS / Foster Parent Recruitment Propaganda


Siblings separated through adoption, reunite in Milwaukee

WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Three siblings, each put up for adoption in the 1950s and '60s, reunited for the first time this week in Milwaukee.

Dennis Walter, Kerry Anderson and Ellen Kreger live in separate states, but discovered they are half-siblings.

More >> Siblings separated through adoption, reunite in Milwaukee

Saturday, June 16, 2018

How Colorado educators fail to report sex abuse of students — and get away with it

Colorado public schools are paying millions to settle lawsuits when educators fail to report sex abuse of students, but those educators avoid legal consequences. This Denver Post investigation explains why.​

More >> How Colorado educators fail to report sex abuse of students — and get away with it

Reno family court judge suspended, fined for violating state code

A Washoe County family court judge was suspended without pay for three months and fined $1,000 for violating the state’s judicial code of conduct.

The Reno Gazette Journal reported Friday that a consent order filed this week by the Nevada Commission on Judicial Discipline found that Judge David Humke mishandled child support cases and refused to discipline his former judicial assistant, who was accused of inappropriate behavior.

More >> Reno family court judge suspended, fined for violating state code

Police: 8-year-old girl raped while in foster care in Silver Spring Township



A Silver Spring Township man has been arrested after police say he raped an 8-year-old girl who was in foster care.

Shane Michael Mehaffie, 48, is charged with felony rape of a child, statutory sexual assault, involuntary deviate sexual intercourse with a child, corruption of minors, indecent assault, child pornography, three counts of felony aggravated indecent assault and misdemeanor indecent assault for incidents police said occurred when the child was in his care.

More >> Police: 8-year-old girl raped while in foster care in Silver Spring Township

Philly Family Court judge who wouldn't let parents speak gets reassigned

After a series of caustically worded reversals from the Pennsylvania Superior Court over what the appellate judges deemed denials of due process, a Philadelphia Family Court judge is being reassigned to the city’s trial division, according to her attorney, Samuel Stretton.

More >> Philly Family Court judge who wouldn't let parents speak gets reassigned 

Does Privatized Foster Care Put Kids at Risk?

Buzzfeed’s harrowing 2015 investigation into MENTOR exposed the grim repercussions of privatized foster care, detailing Alexandria’s and others’ tragic cases that likely resulted from shortcuts made in the pursuit of profit. Piling too many cases on social workers, for instance, can result in abuse when foster parents aren’t properly vetted or monitored. Among the omissions in Alexandria’s case: MENTOR failed to interview Small’s sisters, who said they would have warned the company about her. (MENTOR denied that it cuts corners to make money.)


More >> Does Privatized Foster Care Put Kids at Risk?

Republicans’ Unease Grows Over Trump Policy Separating Families at Border

Top Republican congressional leaders said Thursday they want to limit the separation of children from parents seeking asylum at the southern U.S. border, amid a public backlash against a Trump administration policy that threatens to become an issue in the November election.

House Speaker Paul Ryan told reporters he’s not comfortable with the government’s “zero tolerance” policy, adding that “we don’t want kids to be separated from their parents.” Second-ranking Senate Republican John Cornyn of Texas said he’ll push legislation to keep parents and children together while the children await expedited status hearings.

More >> Republicans’ Unease Grows Over Trump Policy Separating Families at Border




The legal drama over the adoption of Baby N continues and now there is a gag order.

The now 3-year old girl was placed in foster care when she was 12-weeks old after being diagnosed with "failure to thrive." The Schneiter family fostered the child until she was 15-months old. She was removed from the home after Erie County Department of Social Services fought in court to have the child placed in a foster home with her biological siblings.

More >> Child caught up in adoption battle with Erie County

State to open adoption records from 1941 through 1993 on July 1

A new law that takes effect July 1 will open state records for people adopted between 1941 and 1993.

Nick Schneider was adopted as a baby in 1953 and wants to know who brought him into this world.

More >> State to open adoption records from 1941 through 1993 on July 1

Friday, June 15, 2018

Does President Trump agree with the policy of separating families at the border?


"I hate it," President Donald J. Trump says of administration's policy of separating children from parents at the U.S. border, claiming he has no ability to alter the policy without votes from Democrats.

Number of illegal adoption investigations keeps rising

A further 140 cases of possible illegal adoptions are being investigated, the children’s minister has said.

Katherine Zappone said that these cases were in addition to the 126 men and women identified as illegally adopted from St Patrick’s Guild, the former adoption agency.

More >> Number of illegal adoption investigations keeps rising

Mum wins child back after ice cream and haircut claim

A social worker has been criticised by a judge for saying a woman failed to meet her son's "emotional needs" by not taking him out for ice cream.

Mr Justice Mostyn spoke out at a family court hearing in Swansea brought by the boy's mother to bring him out of care.

More >> Mum wins child back after ice cream and haircut claim

House GOP Immigration Bill Would End Family Separation At Border

House Republicans plan to vote next week on a pair of immigration bills, including one that would end the Trump administration's practice of separating children from their parents at the Southwest border.

More >> House GOP Immigration Bill Would End Family Separation At Border


Fundraiser for victims of child abuse offers AR-15 as prize



A fundraiser to help victims of child abuse in the Heber Valley is giving away an AR-15, the gun used in recent mass shootings—including the school shooting in Parkland, Florida.

More >> Fundraiser for victims of child abuse offers AR-15 as prize

Foster children waiting for homes no longer sleeping in caseworker's offices

Every month dozens of children who are waiting to be placed in a new home sometimes sleep in a caseworker’s office. A new partnership will change that.

"We watch our children when they are in the offices, but that is not our goal. It never has been," said Vice President for Behavioral Health Operations at KVC Hospitals, Bobby Eklofe .

More >> Foster children waiting for homes no longer sleeping in caseworker's offices

Sts'ailes marks 10 years of keeping apprehended children in community

Two small children stand on cedar boughs in a Stó:lō long house in Sts'ailes, a community in the upper Fraser Valley.

"In Sts'ailes law, you are "markers" — living monuments to signal how far the community has come," says a leader, placing red and grey wool blankets over their shoulders.

More >> Sts'ailes marks 10 years of keeping apprehended children in community

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Lawsuit filed in alleged child starvation



The maternal aunt of a 9-year-old Hilo girl allegedly starved to death almost two years ago by her parents and maternal grandmother has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the state, the girl’s parents and her maternal grandmother.

Honolulu attorney Randall Rosenberg and Hilo attorney Robert Marx filed the civil suit Tuesday in Honolulu Circuit Court on behalf of Tina Marie Kasten, personal representative of the estate of Shaelynn Alohalani Haleaka Lehano-Stone, who died June 28, 2016, after being found unconscious and apparently malnourished in her grandmother’s apartment on Kinoole Street. Kasten also is filing as guardian of the interests of Lehano-Stone’s two minor siblings, listed only by their initials, K.L.-S. and S.L.-S.

More >> Lawsuit filed in alleged child starvation

This Woman’s Autistic Foster Son Was Ripped From Her Arms Because She Works With Catholics

After Philadelphia cut ties with Catholic Social Services because of the organization’s religious teachings on marriage and family, an autistic boy was kept from returning to his foster mother’s home for weeks, causing both great distress. He has just been reunited with his family, who plan to adopt him.

After being yanked from his foster family, the boy spent weeks languishing in temporary homes instead of being returned to his home because of the agency’s religious beliefs. During that time, he didn’t receive the therapy and specialized care he needs. Ultimately the child was returned to his adoptive family after The Becket Fund For Religious Liberty got involved and fought for their reunion. But the city’s new policy, which targets the faith-based organization for its teachings on marriage and family, remains in place, affecting countless other children and parents.

More >> This Woman’s Autistic Foster Son Was Ripped From Her Arms Because She Works With Catholics

Families in Crisis: DSS training issues put children in danger


A lack of training put more than 100 vulnerable mountain children in risky living situations.

That's what investigators found in the state's takeover of Cherokee's Department of Social Services.

More >> Families in Crisis: DSS training issues put children in danger

Illinois Lawmakers Demand Explanation on Children Stuck in Psychiatric Hospitals

Illinois lawmakers have asked state child welfare officials to explain why they routinely fail to find better homes for hundreds of children in psychiatric hospitals, leaving them trapped for weeks and sometimes months.

State Sen. Julie Morrison, a Democrat from Deerfield, called for a public hearing after a ProPublica Illinois investigation last week revealed that children in the care of the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services are confined to psychiatric hospitals after physicians have cleared them for release.

More >> Illinois Lawmakers Demand Explanation on Children Stuck in Psychiatric Hospitals

Georgia divorced dads among those with least amount of child custody time, study says

Child custody varies from state to state. However, Georgia dads are among the fathers with the least amount of time, according to a new report.

More >> Georgia divorced dads among those with least amount of child custody time, study says

Jury seated in foster dad murder trial


A St. Lucie County judge on Wednesday afternoon, seated a jury to sit in judgement of a foster dad accused of beating to death a 2-year-old boy in his care.

The 2014 killing shocked the community.

More >> Jury seated in foster dad murder trial

Child abuse is now part of America's official immigration policy

It’s impossible to look at the Trump administration’s practice of migrant family separation and see it as anything other than what it is: institutionalized child abuse.

By now, there have been real horror stories: parents hearing their children screaming in the next room; a man who committed suicide when his three-year-old was taken from him; children kept in what Oregon senator Jeff Merkley described as a “”; a woman being  by a border patrol agent: “You will never see your children again. Families don’t exist here. You won’t have a family any more.”

More >> Child abuse is now part of America's official immigration policy


Children’s services ‘overwhelmed’ and permeated by ‘blame, shame and fear’, major review finds

Care Crisis Review calls for more inclusive practice and less adversarial court proceedings, and for examination of impact of welfare reforms on children entering care

More >> Children’s services ‘overwhelmed’ and permeated by ‘blame, shame and fear’, major review finds

Foster care provider denies putting children at risk

A foster care provider in Westman is adamantly denying allegations it engaged in questionable discipline procedures, allowed children to use illegal drugs and failed to provide appropriate supervision and security to kids in care — accusations it said were made in an attempt to ruin their reputation.

In a reply and defence to a counterclaim filed last month in the Brandon Court of Queen’s Bench, Jesse and Cristy Dourado, who formerly operated Specialized Foster Homes in Brandon and the surrounding area, denied the allegations filed as part of a counterclaim by Dakota Ojibway Child and Family Services.

Manitoba - Foster care provider denies putting children at risk

Schoolboy, eight, taken off mum because she didn’t take him for ice cream

A MUM has been told she can have her son back after he was put into care when she was branded unfit for not taking him for ice cream.

The unnamed boy, eight, was taken off his mum and put into foster care after a social worker for Carmarthenshire social services said the boy's emotional needs were not being met - citing him not being taken for a treat and not getting the haircut he wanted.

More >> Schoolboy, eight, taken off mum because she didn’t take him for ice cream

'Easier to take child into care than get support'

Sir Andrew McFarlane, the incoming president of the family division, says the family justice system is in crisis.

The number of children in care has doubled in the last 20 years, with care applications continuing to rise.

More >> 'Easier to take child into care than get support'

DCF gave up on Matthew Tirado, as did his own lawyer

In a legislative hearing on the death of the autistic teenager Matthew Tirado, state Sen. Leonard Suzio, R-Meriden, charges that the state Department of Children and Families “gave up” on the boy. DCF Commissioner Joette Katz responded that she had no authority to do otherwise.

This exchange has caused much discussion, most of it among people who are not juvenile court lawyers.

More >> DCF gave up on Matthew Tirado, as did his own lawyer

Man Charged For Attempted Rape Of Sister's Foster Child

A man was charged Wednesday in Lake Criminal Court on two counts of attempted rape and criminal confinement for attempting to rape his sister's 13-year-old foster child in Merrillville during July 2016. The Times reported the case against 27-year-old Jacorri Howard was reopened by detectives in March at the request of the victim's family, less than two years after the girl claimed he tried to sexually assault her on July 5, 2016 at Brickshire Apartment Complex, 1343 W. 90th Place.

More >> Man Charged For Attempted Rape Of Sister's Foster Child

Family sues WV DHHR, employee, after case fumble

A McDowell County family is claiming a state employee retaliated against them in a custody matter after a relative criticized the employee’s husband, according to a lawsuit filed in Kanawha County Circuit Court last week.

Larry and Christina Koger, both of Iaeger, named the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources, DHHR Secretary Bill Crouch and Angela Long, a DHHR employee at the McDowell County office, in the suit filed last Wednesday. The Kogers allege that in 2012 — and for years after — Long used her position at the agency to inflict emotional distress and suffering because of a personal issue involving the Kogers, Christina Koger’s mother and Christina Koger’s sister’s two children.

More >> Family sues WV DHHR, employee, after case fumble

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

'I don't want to adopt my husband's cousin's baby'

There are times in life when you need to step up for your family, regardless of whether it's convenient for you to do so.

But is there a line when it comes to what's reasonable for someone to ask you to do?

One mum has found herself asking this exact question after she and her husband were asked to adopt his cousin's unborn baby.

More >> 'I don't want to adopt my husband's cousin's baby'

Anniversary of residential school apology brings mixed emotions

The apology was part of the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement that resolved a class-action lawsuit filed by residential school survivor and former Assembly of First Nations national chief Phil Fontaine.

It was the largest class-action settlement in Canadian history.


More >> Anniversary of residential school apology brings mixed emotions

State reports blast Hillsborough foster care providers

DCF is cracking down on Hillsborough foster care following the release of two critical state reports prompted by an 8 On Your Side investigation of foster kids living in a Wawa parking lot.

More >> State reports blast Hillsborough foster care providers

The Trump administration’s separation of families at the border, explained

As a matter of policy, the US government is separating families who seek asylum in the US by crossing the border illegally.

Dozens of parents are being split from their children each day — the children labeled “unaccompanied minors” and sent to government custody or foster care, the parents labeled criminals and sent to jail.

More >> The Trump administration’s separation of families at the border, explained

Another ruling by controversial Philadelphia family court judge is overturned

A Philadelphia family court judge who repeatedly interrupted a lawyer and frequently noted the late hour violated the due process rights of three children when she removed them from the home of their mother, a Pennsylvania appeals court has ruled.

The judge in the case was Lyris Younge, who has more rulings fully or partially overturned on appeal than colleagues in her unit dealing with custody, adoption and foster care, the Legal Intelligencer reports in stories here and here.

More >> Another ruling by controversial Philadelphia family court judge is overturned

3 Sneaky Public Relations Tactics used by CPS Agencies in the media to improve their public image

You would think that most people would be horrified at the thought of a powerful agency like CPS coming to take children away and throwing them into a cold and heartless system, because that's what they really do.  Regardless, CPS has a good public image for the most part, because the public relations departments are able to spin the business of child trafficking by social worker into heroes protecting the sweet innocent children from abuse and neglect.  Even when the agencies are utter failures at protecting kids resulting in a high number of child abuse deaths, the public relations departments have been able to spin it into a need for more workers, more training, more foster homes, more services and whatever other growth opportunities there may be.

More >> 3 Sneaky Public Relations Tactics used by CPS Agencies in the media to improve their public image

Worker in B.C.'s child welfare system allegedly offered cocaine to youth


A residential agency contracted to care for some of B.C.'s most vulnerable youth was shut down this year after a number of shocking allegations came to light, including that a staff member with gang ties offered cocaine to one of the kids.

The claims were made public Tuesday by Bernard Richard, the province's representative for children and youth, who said an investigation into the agency found only 10 of 33 staff and caregivers had received proper screening, including a criminal record check.

More >> Worker in B.C.'s child welfare system allegedly offered cocaine to youth

Baby's death prompts more oversight at Kent Co. CPS

The death of a Wyoming baby who was left alone for two days, strapped in a car seat in his home, is prompting a policy shift at the state agency accused of failing him.

In Kent County, Children’s Protective Services will now require a higher-level manager to sign off on caseworker decisions involving families whose CPS histories meet certain criteria.

More >> Baby's death prompts more oversight at Kent Co. CPS

Newark foster parent charged in 5-year-old’s death



A Newark foster parent has been charged with child endangerment and potentially faces more-serious charges following the death of a 5-year-old he planned to adopt.

Kenneth S. Schulz, 29, was arrested June 4 after 5-year-old Nathaniel Gard was taken to Licking Memorial Hospital on June 2 with multiple injuries consistent with physical abuse.

More >> Newark foster parent charged in 5-year-old’s death




Irish adoption authorities confirm many of 15,000 illegal adoptions sent to USA


Concerns have been raised by Ireland’s family and child agency about a further 748 adoption cases from St Patrick’s Guild adoption society.

Ireland’s illegal adoption scandal continues with concerns now raised about a further 748 adoption cases, some of which saw children being adopted to the US.
More >> Irish adoption authorities confirm many of 15,000 illegal adoptions sent to USA

Little Falls mother fights for custody of son, joins in call for change in Minnesota law

 Amanda Weber took her 10-month-old to the hospital in May for a persistent cough. She lost custody of him a couple days later.

She has joined an association of parents who claim Minnesota's child protection laws are unconstitutional and overly vague.

The group, called Stop Child Protection Services from Legally Kidnapping, sued the state in April and filed an amended complaint last week.

More >> Little Falls mother fights for custody of son, joins in call for change in Minnesota law

CHILLING NCMEC REPORT SHOWS 88% OF MISSING SEX TRAFFICKED KIDS COME FROM US FOSTER CARE

America has a dark secret that no one wants to admit. Talk of this secret will get you labelled as a conspiracy theorist, fake news, and outlets who report on it will have their organic reach throttled by social media and Google alike. Despite the overwhelming evidence to the contrary, many in the mainstream media and the government refuse to see this very real epidemic of child sex trafficking in the United States. What’s more, according to the government’s own data, the vast majority of a portion of these trafficked kids are coming from the country’s own foster care system.

Children are being needlessly ripped from homes at such an alarming rate that hundreds of parents in one state have gone so far as to create a counter-kidnapping organization to stop it.

More >> CHILLING NCMEC REPORT SHOWS 88% OF MISSING SEX TRAFFICKED KIDS COME FROM US FOSTER CARE

Rally held to protest provincial child custody laws on Saturday



Parents unhappy with the current family law system in Alberta gathered in downtown Medicine Hat for a protest over the weekend.

Close to a dozen people met outside of Court of Queen’s Bench on Saturday morning to protest child custody law, saying that women are given an unfair advantage in the courts.

More >> Rally held to protest provincial child custody laws on Saturday

Report: Trump administration considers Texas sites for tent cities for immigrant children

Texas may soon be the site of tent cities that will house immigrant children separated from their parents as a result of the Trump administration's "zero tolerance" policy, McClatchy reported Tuesday.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is eyeing Fort Bliss, an Army base close to El Paso, as a potential location for a cluster of temporary shelters that could house between 1,000 and 5,000 children, McClatchy reported. The department is also considering Dyess Air Force Base in Abilene and Goodfellow Air Force Base in San Angelo.

More >> Report: Trump administration considers Texas sites for tent cities for immigrant children

Foster mom convicted, exonerated in child's death, welcomes new daughter into her family



A mother who spent years in prison before she was exonerated for capital murder has given birth to a daughter.

Hannah Overton announced her sixth child, Gabriela Aliana, this week in a Facebook post that described a difficult delivery. Overton had to have a blood transfusion, and her new daughter spent a few days in a neonatal intensive care unit.

More >> Foster mom convicted, exonerated in child's death, welcomes new daughter into her family

Clovis man who owned cheer gym arrested for molestation of foster children over several year period


A Clovis man is in custody after being accused of sexually abusing his foster children. Robert Martin, 55, is being held in the Fresno County Jail without bail.

Assistant District Attorney Steve Wright says, "One of the children was molested between the ages of 9 and 13. One of the children was 10 and one of the children was five at the time."

More >> Clovis man who owned cheer gym arrested for molestation of foster children over several year period

50 years on: We want an apology, says unmarried Shrewsbury teenager forced to give up baby daughter

Now, almost 50 years later, MPs are calling for an apology after half a million babies were forcibly removed from their young and unmarried mothers.

More than 20 MPs have backed a motion recognising the “pain and suffering” of women who were deemed vulnerable and who were subsequently forced to give up their babies by the authorities. Their move follows the government’s rejection last year of a demand for a public inquiry.

More >> 50 years on: We want an apology, says unmarried Shrewsbury teenager forced to give up baby daughter

Black children in Nova Scotia's foster care system face challenges, say advocates

Robinah Kakembo has seen first-hand the problems that can arise when African immigrant and refugee families in Nova Scotia come into contact with the province's foster care system.

Kakembo and her husband, Patrick, have been foster parents for the past 17 years. They take in black and African children.

More >> Black children in Nova Scotia's foster care system face challenges, say advocates

Michigan Reunification Day celebrates families regaining custody of children

The Michigan Hall of Justice in Lansing served as a place of celebration on Monday.

Two newly reunited families were honored at the third annual Michigan Reunification Day.

One of the hardest things to go through as a parent is losing custody of a child. But fighting to regain that custody can be even harder.

More >> Michigan Reunification Day celebrates families regaining custody of children

Social worker seeks removal from register after saying job had ‘negative’ impact on him

A social worker with 32 years of experience will seek voluntary removal from the register after saying his career had a “negative” impact on him.

The social worker was suspended in 2015 after failing to carry out visits, reports and maintain care plans in statutory timescales.

More >> Social worker seeks removal from register after saying job had ‘negative’ impact on him

Monday, June 11, 2018

How children in state care are being failed

Too many children in state care are being moved between caregivers and this instability has led many to turn to a life of crime and being unable to bond with their caregivers, youth advocates say.

New data obtained by the Herald on Sunday under the Official Information Act shows each year between 2013 and 2017 more than 40% of children in state care had three or more caregivers during the previous five years.

More >> How children in state care are being failed

Lucky mum from 'baby scoop' era backs calls for an inquiry into forced adoption

At the 50th anniversary of her miraculous escape from the "baby scoop" era, an Australian who gave birth in New Zealand is keen to see an inquiry for the sake of those who were not so lucky.

An "exception rather than the rule", Josette Ible has been in New Zealand to thank North Shore Hospital staff for helping her to keep her daughter.

More >> Lucky mum from 'baby scoop' era backs calls for an inquiry into forced adoption

DCF, FDLE investigating local woman in alleged child adoption scheme

An Action News Jax investigation into an alleged child adoption scheme has sparked a criminal investigation with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, and a separate investigation by the Florida Department of Children and Families.

At the center of it all is a 3-year-old boy named Dylan, once a part of Florida's foster care system.

More >> DCF, FDLE investigating local woman in alleged child adoption scheme

Children from border fight in Washington state foster care

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee and a roster of fellow Democratic politicians on Saturday decried the federal government's decision to separate young children of asylum seekers taken into custody at the U.S.-Mexico border from their parents indefinitely.

The administration is sending more than 1,600 immigrants — including some of those parents — to federal prisons amid a lack of space in other facilities. Inslee said six children were brought to a Seattle foster care facility after being separated from their families at the border. It's unclear where the parents are, but the governor's office said they are not in Washington state.

More >> Children from border fight in Washington state foster care




Adoption scandal: DNA test hints at birth parents’ stories

A woman who was illegally adopted and believed she was from Dublin has said that a DNA test showed she has no genetic relatives in the county.

Maria Dumbell, 68, has been trying to obtain information about her identity for 40 years. She took a test earlier this year which showed that all her descendants and family were from Cork.

More >> Adoption scandal: DNA test hints at birth parents’ stories




Abandoned by her adoptive family, betrayed by the state



Four decades ago, Mallika was adopted by a Danish family from a children’s home in Coimbatore, only to be abandoned a few years later. Personal misfortunes and state apathy further added to her ordeals.

More >> Abandoned by her adoptive family, betrayed by the state

'We must right a historic wrong': Women forced to give up their babies for adoption tell of their decades of heartache as MPs call for an apology

Women forced to give up their babies for adoption in the Fifties and Sixties told yesterday of their decades of heartache as MPs urged the Government to apologise for the scandal.

More than half a million newborns were taken from young unmarried women at a time when being a single mother was often seen as shameful.

More >> 'We must right a historic wrong': Women forced to give up their babies for adoption tell of their decades of heartache as MPs call for an apology

Sunday, June 10, 2018

'Where's my mom?' cries girl as immigrant kids separated from parents arrive in Michigan

Separated from her parents at the southern border, a 9-year-old girl from Guatemala who recently arrived in Michigan often cries out in Spanish: "Where's my mom? When can I talk to my mom? When can I see my mom?"

Her cries of pain are echoed across the United States with a growing number of immigrant children being ripped by U.S. officials from their parents after they cross the border illegally in hopes of getting asylum.

More >> 'Where's my mom?' cries girl as immigrant kids separated from parents arrive in Michigan

Doubled in a decade, tally of the children placed in care in the UK

Last year 14,490 children were taken into care in England – 40 a day – almost double that of 2008, when the figure was 7,440.

The bombshell new statistics came in an answer to a parliamentary question.

More >> Doubled in a decade, tally of the children placed in care

Stolen Kids? Ireland Fears 15,000 Illegal Adoptions as Mothers Told Babies Died



As many of 15,000 children are suspected of having been illegally adopted in Ireland over the past 100 years, according to UK children charity organization Barnardo.

More >> Stolen Kids? Ireland Fears 15,000 Illegal Adoptions as Mothers Told Babies Died

MPs demand apology for unmarried mothers who gave up children

MPs are calling on the government to apologise to women who were coerced into handing over their babies for adoption in Britain in the 1950s and 60s.

More than 20 MPs have backed a motion recognising the “pain and suffering” of women forced to give up their babies. Their move follows the government’s rejection last year of a demand for a public inquiry.

More >> MPs demand apology for unmarried mothers who gave up children

Saturday, June 09, 2018

How Child Separation Is Normally Done

The Trump administration’s apparent policy of separating parents and children entering the U.S. without papers—even those seeking asylum—has drawn criticism, and rightly so: It’s transparently cruel and essentially disconnected from any public safety or child welfare purpose. A district court judge has also said such a policy, if it did exist, would be a clear and “brutal” constitutional violation. It’s also a breathtaking departure from the procedural norms that the U.S. legal system has developed over decades for removing children from their parents—a process that state courts treat with a constitutional seriousness akin to criminal cases. As a public defender in Connecticut, I’ve represented parents and children in neglect and abuse cases for almost 10 years, and while the system is far from perfect, the prevailing understanding among all participants—judges, parents’ and children’s lawyers, and the state child welfare agency—is that family separation is the last resort.

More >> How Child Separation Is Normally Done


One Man's Journey Leads to Outcry on Child Protection Cases



It's a lawsuit between parents and the Minnesota Department of Human Services that has been ongoing on for months.

Dwight Mitchell said three children were taken from him because of a single spanking incident. After months of fighting a system that he claims wrongfully overreached its authority, he is now being joined by many other parents who allege the state's protection laws are unconstitutionally broad and vague.

More >> One Man's Journey Leads to Outcry on Child Protection Cases

Teen was driving foster mother's minivan in fatal crash with semi truck in Clark County

The Shelby County Department of Job and Family Services said Friday the teen who was killed in a Clark County crash Thursday night was a foster child.

In a release Friday, the county department identified the teen as 13-year-old Sky Lhamon, who was in permanently in the custody of service.

More >> Teen was driving foster mother's minivan in fatal crash with semi truck in Clark County

Trump administration to fingerprint parents who claim custody of unaccompanied migrant kids

The Trump administration will now fingerprint and run immigration checks on the mothers and fathers who come forward to claim custody of unaccompanied migrant children stopped at the border under a new policy that is stoking new fears in immigrant communities nationwide.

The initiative implemented this week is the latest get-tough effort by the Trump administration that promised stronger vetting procedures of sponsors after drawing criticism last week for reportedly losing track of more than 1,475 children they had placed with sponsors.

More >> Trump administration to fingerprint parents who claim custody of unaccompanied migrant kids

Ex-foster parent gets 25 years for sexually assaulting children in his care



Former Twin Lakes foster parent Gary Reed got a 25-year prison term during sentencing Thursday for sexually abusing children he had in his care.

Speaking through a letter read to the court by his wife, one of Reed’s victims said he thought he had finally found salvation from a lifetime of abuse when he was placed in Reed’s home.

More >> Ex-foster parent gets 25 years for sexually assaulting children in his care




Are More Than 10,000 Children in U.S. Detention Centers?

The Department of Health and Human Services announced that 10,773 unaccompanied immigrant children were indeed in detention facilities as of May 2018.

More >> Are More Than 10,000 Children in U.S. Detention Centers?

ProPublica Illinois Investigates ‘Stuck Kids’ in Psychiatric Hospitals

A ProPublica Illinois investigation co-published this month with The Atlantic outlines a disturbing pattern when it comes to the care of children in Illinois psychiatric hospitals.

Hundreds of children between 2015 and 2017 were forced to stay in these hospitals after they should have been released, the investigation found. They were under the care of the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services, which had nowhere else to send them, according to the report. In some cases, they stayed for months longer than medically necessary.

More >> ProPublica Illinois Investigates ‘Stuck Kids’ in Psychiatric Hospitals

Minnesota County Ordered to Pay $1.5M Settlement for Its ‘Deliberate Indifference’ to Foster Child Who Hanged Herself


Hennepin County has agreed to pay $1.5 million to settle a wrongful death suit brought by the family of a 6-year-old girl who committed suicide while in foster care, the Star Tribune reported Wednesday.

More >> Minnesota County Ordered to Pay $1.5M Settlement for Its ‘Deliberate Indifference’ to Foster Child Who Hanged Herself

DCF, FDLE investigating local woman in alleged child adoption scheme



An Action News Jax investigation into an alleged child adoption scheme has sparked a criminal investigation with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, and a separate investigation by the Florida Department of Children and Families.

More >> DCF, FDLE investigating local woman in alleged child adoption scheme

'He's a biter': why was my foster son reduced to a cruel label?

As soon as my wife picked up the phone I knew she was going to say yes to this next foster placement. I could see the look in her eyes. An abandoned three-year-old – that was all she heard. That was all she needed to know.

As for me, all I heard was the word “biter”. Images flashed through my mind. I saw some kind of feral hooligan, attacking my other children and scarring them for life, while I booked hepatitis B immunisations and filled out endless reports. I could already feel the pain of sharp milk teeth sinking into my thigh.

More >> 'He's a biter': why was my foster son reduced to a cruel label?

Children's services staff remembers girl killed in crash


Children's services workers in Shelby County are mourning the loss of a 13-year-old girl who died in a crash after driving her foster mother's minivan.

The teen has been identified as Sky Lhamon of Sidney, according to the Shelby County Department of Job and Family Services.

More >> Children's services staff remembers girl killed in crash

Thursday, June 07, 2018

Meet the US cop who found his long-lost Irish mother through a DNA test

American Kevin Battle, a Harbor Master from Portland, Maine, recently found out that he was adopted from Co. Tipperary after taking a DNA test.

According to RTÉ, Battle had difficulty finding his birth mother prior to taking the test because the records were incorrect. The family members he has met with have told him that his mother was forced to put him up for adoption and had tried many times to find him before she passed away.

More >> Meet the US cop who found his long-lost Irish mother through a DNA test

SA Minister denies discussing an idea to allow potential foster carers to inspect children



South Australian Child Protection Minister, Rachel Sanderson, has "categorically rejected" that she ever discussed with her department the possibility of allowing potential foster carers to inspect children in state care before selecting one to take home.

Earlier this afternoon, in Question Time, Ms Sanderson left open the possibility that she had, saying: "I won't be discussing private discussions I have with my department or anyone about ideas."

More >> SA Minister denies discussing an idea to allow potential foster carers to inspect children

Death of Tasmanian baby due to 'extensive failings' of child protection system, coroner finds

The death of a 24-day-old baby might have been avoided if Child Protection Services (CPS) had properly assessed and acted upon the warning signs, a Tasmanian coroner has found.

Coroner Olivia McTaggart found infant Teegan Rose Hayes was accidentally suffocated while sleeping with her parents at their Devonport home on November 4, 2011.

More >> Death of Tasmanian baby due to 'extensive failings' of child protection system, coroner finds

Parents oppose greater oversight of their home-schooled kids

Connecticut home-school advocates and parents on Wednesday called an ongoing Office of the Child Advocate investigation into home education discriminatory and an invasion of privacy.

The home-schoolers’ criticism of Child Advocate Sarah Eagan is a response to her recent report finding that Connecticut doesn’t have a safety net for children withdrawn from public schools for home education. That April report was a follow-up to another prompted by the February 2017 death of a 17-year-old boy with autism who was removed from school by his mother.

More >> Parents oppose greater oversight of their home-schooled kids

Minnesota parents seek changes to child protection laws

A group of Minnesota parents are seeking for some of the state's child protection laws to be declared unconstitutional, alleging they deprive families of due process.

The Stop Child Protection Services From Legally Kidnapping organization filed a letter in federal court Tuesday, The Star Tribune reported . The laws are overly broad and put children at risk of being removed from safe homes, the letter said.

More >> Minnesota parents seek changes to child protection laws

Illinois divorced dads have among least amount of time spent with kids, study says

Illinois ranks in the bottom five states for the amount of custody time dads get to spend with kids, according to a new study.

Children in Illinois spend an average of 23.1 percent of their time each year with their dad, putting those fathers in 47th place in the U.S., followed by other states with low dad time: 48th-place Mississippi, where dads get 23 percent; 49th-place Oklahoma with 22.4 percent and last-place Tennessee, where fathers get 21.8 percent. The study was compiled by Custody X Change, a Utah-based company that sells software to help divorced parents divide custody and create parenting plans.

More >> Illinois divorced dads have among least amount of time spent with kids, study says

Hundreds of Illinois children left in psychiatric hospitals weeks or months longer than necessary, report says


Hundreds of children in the care of the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services who are admitted into psychiatric hospitals have been left there long after they have been cleared to leave, according to a new report.

A ProPublica Illinois investigation found that out of nearly 6,000 psychiatric hospitalizations of children in DCFS care between 2015 and 2017 nearly 30 percent were held beyond medical necessity, instead of going into foster care or a residential treatment facility.

More >> Hundreds of Illinois children left in psychiatric hospitals weeks or months longer than necessary, report says

Judge Calls Trump's Border Separations of Children `Brutal'

The Trump administration failed to kill a legal challenge to its practice of separating undocumented parents and children who seek to enter the U.S. to flee persecution at home, with a judge handing an early victory to civil rights activists who say the policy is unconstitutional and cruel.

More >> Judge Calls Trump's Border Separations of Children `Brutal'

Judge to decide soon if auditors can review Michigan adoption records

A Michigan judge will rule within 10 days if the Michigan Auditor General, the Legislature's main investigative arm, has constitutional authority to access confidential records without a court order.

Court of Claims Judge Cynthia Stephens heard about 30 minutes or oral arguments Wednesday in a case that is specifically about whether the auditor needs a court order to access adoption records but is more broadly about the auditors' powers to compel the administration to turn over documents.

More >> Judge to decide soon if auditors can review Michigan adoption records

Hennepin County reaches $1.5 million settlement with family of girl who died in foster care



Six-year-old Kendrea Johnson was found hanging from a jump rope in her foster home four years ago, but her death won’t be in vain, attorneys for her family said Wednesday.

Hennepin County reached a $1.5 million settlement with Johnson’s grandmother, Mary Broadus, who filed a federal wrongful-death suit claiming that the county failed to address the girl’s suicidal ideation.

More >> Hennepin County reaches $1.5 million settlement with family of girl who died in foster care

‘Children home girls drugged before rape’

The minor girls living at the government-run ‘children home’ on Sahu Road in Muzaffarpur were being allegedly drugged regularly before being raped.

Quoting the rape survivors, a police officer said on Wednesday they were given two tablets after their dinner. “They told police one tablet was white and the other was pink,” the officer said, adding the victims would fall asleep after taking the medicines.

More >> ‘Children home girls drugged before rape’

Wednesday, June 06, 2018

Governor Vows to Fight Foster Care Takeover

Gov. Phil Bryant seemed prepared to fight to keep control over Mississippi's foster-care system last week after attorneys representing the children asked U.S. District Judge Tom Lee to hold the State in contempt of court and to turn over the system to a court-appointed receiver.

"You've got to remember that these plaintiffs' attorneys make a lot of money keeping this case going," the governor told reporters at the Capitol last week.

More >> Governor Vows to Fight Foster Care Takeover

Attorney, mother upset DCFS inspected home, called complaint bogus

 It was a knock on the door two weeks ago that has Catherine Cleveland both upset and puzzled.

Two weeks ago, a social worker from the state's Division of Children and Family Services (DCFS) came to her home requesting an inspection.

More >> Attorney, mother upset DCFS inspected home, called complaint bogus

UN: ‘Nothing normal’ about U.S. detaining immigrant children


More than 650 children were separated from their parents at the U.S. border during a two-week period in May, according to the government’s own figures. On Tuesday, the UN Office for Human Rights condemned the practice and told the U.S. to halt immediately. William Brangham reports that these separations are happening in large part due to Attorney General Jeff Sessions' Zero Tolerance policy.

More >> UN: ‘Nothing normal’ about U.S. detaining immigrant children

Boy taken from mum over Bob the Builder car concerns



A nurse has had her one-year-old son taken from her after a social worker said the way she let him sit in a Bob the Builder toy car was "inappropriate" for his age.

The social worker told a private family court hearing in Reading she had concerns about the woman's "basic parenting skills".

More >> Boy taken from mum over Bob the Builder car concerns

Tuesday, June 05, 2018

Number of Alberta child welfare deaths increased last year

Thirty-three children died while in care or receiving support from Alberta child services last year, equalling a post-2009 high set four years ago.

Youth deaths in the 2017-18 fiscal year rose by seven over a year earlier. Sixteen of the youths were aged five or younger. Eight were older than 18.

Las Vegas woman sent to prison for abusing adopted children



Janet Solander likely will die in prison for the years of torture she inflicted on three children she adopted.

At her sentencing Tuesday, when District Judge Valerie Adair ordered the 57-year-old Solander to serve 35 years to life behind bars, one of the girls said she could no longer find comfort in a mother figure.

More >> Las Vegas woman sent to prison for abusing adopted children

J'can mother loses court bid to stop son's adoption by Canadian family

A British Columbia judge has ruled against a Jamaican mother's bid to regain custody of her 10-year-old son who is set to be adopted into a Canadian family.

According to Canadian media reports, the ruling was recently handed down after a four-day hearing earlier this year during which the 38-year old Jamaican applied to have a continuing custody order, which gave the British Columbia Ministry of Child and Family Development custody of her son, to be cancelled.

More >> J'can mother loses court bid to stop son's adoption by Canadian family

Group of Minnesota parents calls for shutdown of Child Protective Services



A group is calling for a federal court to shut down Child Protective Services after claiming the agency takes children away from parents without due process.

“Stop Child Protective Services from Legally Kidnapping Children” filed a motion Tuesday for a permanent injunction to immediately close CPS, calling the agency’s practices unconstitutional.

More >> Group of Minnesota parents calls for shutdown of Child Protective Services

Free-range parents want more freedom for kids -- without the neglect citations

Brandon Logan would like to be the kind of free-range parent who allows his kids to bike down to the pond and fish near their home in Austin, Texas, but he doesn’t dare let them go without him.

It’s not that he thinks his children, ages 10, 8 and 7, would be in any danger. Instead, he worries that permitting them to go fishing unsupervised a half-mile from their home would trigger a call by a well-meaning neighbor to Child Protective Services.

More >> Free-range parents want more freedom for kids -- without the neglect citations

Court orders records unsealed in Penn State officials' case

A Pennsylvania appeals court on Monday ordered the release of documents sealed in the criminal case against former Penn State administrators over their handling of child sex abuse complaints about former assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky.

More >> Court orders records unsealed in Penn State officials' case

New 'Adoption Option Act' to ease adoptions in Louisiana celebrated at the State Capitol

When Dylan David and his wife Kristine waded into the largely unregulated world of adoption, they lost their money, lost the child to a higher bidder, and had no legal recourse.

The Baton Rouge couple had agreed to pay $2,500 in expenses to an expectant mother who would allow them to adopt her child. The mother kept asking for more money, then they discovered she also had collected $12,000 from another couple, David said. Law enforcement told the couple that the mother broke no laws, mainly because the existing laws covering this situation were so vague.

More >> New 'Adoption Option Act' to ease adoptions in Louisiana celebrated at the State Capitol

Monday, June 04, 2018

Fury at top family court judge who said we should applaud the end of the nuclear family and welcome the new reality of single and same-sex households



The country’s most senior family judge was under fire from politicians and colleagues yesterday after saying that the collapse of the traditional family was to be welcomed.

In a speech Sir James Munby, president of the Family Division of the High Court, said there was a new reality of single parent households, same-sex marriages and adopted families.

More >> Fury at top family court judge who said we should applaud the end of the nuclear family and welcome the new reality of single and same-sex households

Sunday, June 03, 2018

The East Germans split up families, too. It caused lifelong trauma.

Katrin Behr was only 4 years old when her life was turned upside down forever.

“They came early in the morning and took away my mom,” Behr recalls of that fateful day in 1972 in East Germany, when she became the victim of a large-scale, secretive socialist scheme to separate children from parents considered politically defiant. Her mother’s crime? She wanted to flee the repressive socialist country into U.S.-protected West Germany.

More >> The East Germans split up families, too. It caused lifelong trauma.

Child welfare advocates: Strip foster care system from state

A children’s rights group is asking a federal judge to appoint an independent party to oversee Mississippi’s troubled child welfare system, saying the state has failed to adequately protect children in its care for the past decade.

More >> Child welfare advocates: Strip foster care system from state

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