Cowley County, Kan., a place almost exactly in the middle of middle-America, is conservative and working-class. It would seem to have little in common with coastal Marin County, Calif., one of the wealthiest places in America, where the politics are as blue as the ocean.
But it seems the two places have one thing in common: an inability to confront issues of race and class biases in that most sacred cow of child welfare, Court-Appointed Special Advocates (CASA).
An advocate of the take-the-child-and-run approach to child welfare now is claiming that a case in which a child was removed from her parents, placed in foster care, adopted by the foster parent and then allegedly severely abused by the foster/adoptive mother somehow is an example of “family preservation at all costs.” Seriously.
And speaking of abuse in foster care: Everyone should be shocked by the fact that the inspector general of Nebraska Child Welfare, Julie Rogers, has identified 36 cases of children consigned to the “care” of the state, only to be sexually abused in foster care. But no one should be surprised. The heart of the problem: Nebraska still is tearing apart families at one of the highest rates in the country.