Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Foster Care Not There Yet

December 13, 2007

Connecticut's Department of Children and Families has spent $1.4 million in the past year on a new program that helps a troubled family quickly resolve underlying causes of a child's removal — unpaid heating bills, food problems, transportation — so that the child can return home safely within a few days.

The effort is to be commended. Studies show that permanency dramatically increases the likelihood that children will lead productive lives.

DCF officials acknowledge, however, that the agency has a way to go before it can hold itself up as a model of child protection. The new intervention program, which DCF intends to expand, has served fewer than 100 families.

Nearly a third of the more than 5,000 children in foster care in Connecticut have no permanent home to go to and are therefore at high risk of winding up unemployed, homeless or in prison.

Not enough funding is channeled to programs to prevent child abuse and neglect in part because the federal government, despite its emphasis on permanency, still provides more funds for out-of-home services to foster children than for initiatives designed to keep families together.

The funding formulas need to be changed to encourage more permanency. It might also be wise to provide some form of assistance to foster children who age out of the system at 18 so that their entry into society will not be so full of risks.


Copyright © 2007, The Hartford Courant

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COMMENTS:
Hiram Abif

"Connecticut's Department of Children and Families has spent $1.4 million in the past year on a new program that helps a troubled family quickly resolve underlying causes of a child's removal — unpaid heating bills, food problems, transportation — so that the child can return home safely within a few days."

Underlying causes of a child's removal — unpaid heating bills, food problems, transportation --

Let me explain something ... DCF removes children illegally on a daily basis and they do not make efforts to return children, unless you plead guilty to their accusations. I have seen legal paperwork that indicated an unlawful removal of 3 children.

A judge denied 3 petitions to remove children, and DCF took them anyway. They lied to the police and we are now trying to work with the Feds to investigate this. The criminal proof is on paper.

Please stop glorifying this agency.

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Freddy Mansfield
Cheshire, CT

Hiram Abif wrote:
"Connecticut's Department of Children and Families has spent $1.4 million in the past year on a new program that helps a troubled family quickly resolve underlying causes of a child's removal — unpaid heating bills, food problems, transportation — so that the child can return home safely within a few days."
Underlying causes of a child's removal — unpaid heating bills, food problems, transportation --
Let me explain something ... DCF removes children illegally on a daily basis and they do not make efforts to return children, unless you plead guilty to their accusations. I have seen legal paperwork that indicated an unlawful removal of 3 children.
A judge denied 3 petitions to remove children, and DCF took them anyway. They lied to the police and we are now trying to work with the Feds to investigate this. The criminal proof is on paper.
Please stop glorifying this agency.
I think these social workers and judges are all corrupt. D.C.F. is corrupt and they do remove children without just cause. Our taxes are wasted on these criminals.

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rene howitt
AOL

A program that returns children to the families quickly when economics is at the root of the problem is a good idea. Discerning whether economics is really the underlying problem is not always so easy to determine. DCF's mandate is to reunite the family whenever possible. More often than not children are returned to dysfunctional families by DCF in an effort to give these parents a chance to get their acts together.

DCF employees need to be better trained in determining what the root problem is ie. parents who chose drugs over paying the heating bill, parents who are mentally unstable will need more than food stamps to have any hope of correcting their problems. When there are other underlying issues and DCF determines it's just poverty, then fix that, then send the children back in, how is that in the "best interest of the child."
www.whosebestinterest.com

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Pat
Monroe, CT

I totally agree with keeping the family together especially if it is simply a lack of money. I have had three foster children that I have been very good to and I think they appreciate me as best they can but they STILL want to be home with Mom and Dad and I don't care how bad the situation is...they want to be home. Hooray for the state of CT to understand this theory and although I love my foster kids I think if they are safe at home with their families the money is better spent there.

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Steven_G_Erickso n
Brattleboro, VT

There are probably 10 times more DCF workers than are needed. Children that are being abused should be removed, but way to many kids are being taken away for the cash, and for the "make work" positions.

But for the most part, 9/10 of kids that are taken are further harmed by being removed. There is more abuse and psychological trauma.

Why should tax dollars fund this?

Connecticut gets Federal Tax Dollar to remove kids. It is like giving a crack cocaine addict more crack just for making excuses. You can then understand why Connecticut takes so many kids.

My friend had his kid removed. He had complained about not being served by police in a downtown area, so when he and his wife got into an argument police decided to fabricate a story and his wife was told to sign it unread. Retaliation when on and on and now his two young boys might be adopted out. Video:
http://www.youtube.com/watch...

It is a lose/lose situation. Why should we pay to ruin and break up families and harm children?



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