Some recent media articles and resources relating to child abuse and neglect. If you have items that you think would be helpful to include in this occasional post, please forward them to me at the email in my signature block.
These stories were chosen because of their perceived relevance to the child welfare community. MiPSAC is not responsible for the views expressed in any of these articles, nor does it take a position for or against the positions expressed in the articles. They are presented merely to provide a sampling of what the media is saying about child welfare.
Charlie Enright, JD, MSW
4907 Foster Rd.
Midland, MI 48642
Michigan Professional Society on Abuse of Children, MiPSAC
This and previous posts can be found at: http://www.mipsac.org/category/can-articles
RECENT MEDIA ARTICLES
The Mentalist’s Tim Kang Launches Film Project to Promote Child Abuse Awareness
March 5, Talkmoviesworld.com: A new film project launched in January by actor Tim Kang is being praised by the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC) for the awareness it will bring to the issues of abducted and sexually abused children. Link to Article
Connecticut to Change Response to Child Abuse
Mar 5, AP: The Connecticut Department of Children and Families is changing the way it investigates reports of child neglect and abuse by creating separate responses for low and high-risk incidents. Beginning Monday, DCF will perform a family assessment in response to all reports that are deemed low and medium risks. The assessment will help families reach out for community resources. Low-risk cases include things like families improperly clothing children in the winter, whereas high-risk incidents include reports of physical and sexual abuse. The department will continue to respond to high-risk incidents with an investigation. Currently, all reports of abuse are investigated by DCF, regardless of the risk level. The change comes under a department initiative, not through state legislation. Link to full story.
Detroit Department of Human Services Faces Decertification, Loss of Poverty Funds
March 2, Huffington Post: The Michigan Department of Human Services is going forward with a plan to remove control of funds for low-income residents from the city’s Department of Human Services — whether or not City Council approves the idea. Michigan DHS Director Maura Corrigan spoke at a City Council meeting Friday afternoon to request that Council voluntarily allow the state agency to transfer control of Detroit’s Community Service Block Grants and weatherization money to a new entity. Allegations of mismanagement of funds at DDHS has provoked an ongoing criminal investigation. Maura Corrigan, head of Michigan DHS cited the scandal as the reason Michigan DHS is trying to de-designate Detroit DHS as operator for the funds. Link to Article
Report Finds Child Abuse Costs Victims $200,000 Over A Lifetime,
Mar 2, Huffington Post: In a newly released report the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that the average cost to someone who experiences maltreatment as a child — defined as physical abuse, psychological abuse, sexual abuse or neglect — is $210,012 over the course of a lifetime. According to the report, the figure represents the combined costs of child welfare, special education, criminal justice expenses, medical care and lost productivity as an adult. Link to Article
Michigan Court of Appeals Rules Braman, Springer Families Can’t Sue DHS
Mar 2, WOOD TV: The families of Nicholas Braman and Calista Springer cannot sue the state of Michigan for failing to properly investigate abuse complaints before each child was killed, the Michigan Court of Appeals ruled Friday. Link to Article
State Educators Ask To Waive No Child Left Behind Rules In Exchange For Reforms
Mar 2, mlive.com: State educators say they’ve formally asked the U.S. Education Department to waive the rule that calls for having 100 percent of students deemed “proficient.” Schools would have to accept new reforms in exchange for the waiver, and state Superintendent Mike Flanagan said that includes a new report card to hold schools accountable for student performance – including the achievement gaps between various student groups. The 100 percent requirement was part of the No Child Left Behind Act, which called on states to face sanctions unless all students meet the standards. U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan last summer said he would offer states waivers in exchange for reforms – a move made out of frustration because Congress has not amended the landmark, bipartisan education law. Link to Article
3rd Bill Added to Autism Proposal: Measure Ties Coverage To Creation Of State Fund
Mar 2, Detroit News: Two bills that would require insurers to cover autism treatment in Michigan are now tied to a third (SB 981) that would create a State fund to reimburse insurers for such treatment. Link to Detroit News Article
In a related article:
But Some Say Other Disorders Are Being Left Out
Mar 1, mlive.com: Opponents said they don’t think it is fair to cover just autism while leaving other mental disorders potentially without assistance, with one saying it’s like a cancer coverage bill that covers leukemia but not breast cancer. The bills — SB 414, 415 and 981 –would require insurers to provide coverage of autism diagnosis and treatment, while directing the state Licensing and Regulatory Affairs Department to create an autism coverage incentive program through which insurance carriers and third-party administrators could seek reimbursement for paid claims. Link to mlive Article
L.A. Softens Its Hard Line to Get Kids to Class on Time
Mar 1, NPR: Los Angeles is easing its stance on truancy. For the past decade, a tough city ordinance slapped huge fines on students for even one instance of skipping school or being late, but the Los Angeles City Council is changing that law to focus on helping students get to class because it turns out those harsh fines were backfiring. Link to Article
Mexico Case Reveals Vast Human Trafficking Scheme
Feb 28, Insightcrime.org: The case of a Mexican organization which allegedly paid mothers to put their children up for adoption has highlighted the fine line between adoption and child trafficking, and suggests that the practice is widespread in the country. A child trafficking ring uncovered by Mexican police in mid-January in Guadalajara, Jalisco has operated since the 1980’s, and provided hundreds of children to adoptive families in other countries. American Connections: The Guadalajara-based newspaper Reforma/MURAL reported that an American adoption agency in Colorado was also involved with Mexican-Irish adoptions currently being investigated. Without naming the agency, attorney Carlos Montoya said that it had branches in both Tijuana and Guadalajara. The only American business approved by the Mexican government to work adoptions from the state of Jalisco is the California-based Across the World Adoptions. Lesley Sigel, executive director of Across the World, says that they’ve never completed an adoption for a child from Jalisco. The US Department of State statistics show that just twenty-two Mexican children were adopted by Americans in 2011, a decline of 50 percent from 2010. Link to Insightcrime Article
New Study Suggests Ecstasy Use During Pregnancy May Harm Fetus
Feb 28, U.S. News & World Report: A new study suggests that taking the hallucinogen ecstasy during pregnancy may harm the health of the fetus and lead to poorer motor control in infants. Link to Article