● Another outstanding story from Rise: Two cases in which children suffer accidental injuries. In one case the city family policing agency, the Administration for Children’s Services (ACS), tries to take the child away. Writing for rise, the mother in that case, Imani Worthy, compares her situation to another mother:
Around the same time, there was a story in the news about a white actress, Jenny Mollen. She had dropped her son and he fractured his skull. She talked openly about how hard it was for her as a mother and that she was so thankful for the hospital staff. They didn’t question her motives.
● Once again, Eli Hager of The Marshall Project tells the real story of COVID-19 and child welfare. The story is called These Parents Had to Bond With Their Babies Over Zoom — or Lose Them Forever.
--That agency just settled with the U.S. Department of Justice over widespread discrimination against parents who are deaf or hard of hearing. According to the Justice Department:
DOJ found evidence that on more than 100 occasions
between 2017 and 2019, the Child Welfare Program failed to provide appropriate
auxiliary aids or services, including qualified sign language interpreters, for
the complainant families. The
communications included high stakes interviews during investigations regarding
the possible termination of parental rights and during court-ordered treatments
and counseling required for reunification with children.
--And The Imprint reports on the sickening maneuvers undertaken by that same agency – with the connivance of a Court-Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) program, of course – to tear a Black child from loving relatives and place him with white strangers for adoption. Even though they failed, the Washington State Supreme Court apparently is sufficiently concerned about what was done to this Black child and his family to hear an appeal of the original decision to remove the child.
● In Minnesota, a state long an extreme outlier when it comes to tearing apart families, family advocates are not willing to settle for the usual boilerplate-b.s.-filled “preventive services” plan. As The Imprint reports, they’re demanding a plan that will “address one of Minnesota’s most glaring child welfare issues: racial disproportionality.”
● I have more about the injustice inflicted on children by the fifth wheel of the child welfare system in Missouri, and on the harm of mandatory child abuse reporting laws in this blog post.
● And, finally, I believe that CASA isn’t just racially biased (see Washington State item above for only the latest example) – the bias is built into the model. The program also is a well-documented failure in almost every respect. I believe CASA is unfixable. But if there’s one person who could prove me wrong it’s Charity Chandler-Cole. Guess who’s just been named to run the CASA program in Los Angeles. This is going to be interesting to watch.