Monday, January 12, 2009

When government inefficiency turns deadly

Daily Telegraph: Children Left to Die by Social Workers

"A baby of seven months died in bed with her mother, whose alcohol intake contributed to the death. Social workers who previously found the mother drunk in bed with the infant had asked her to sign an agreement to tackle her drinking, which she signed after consuming eight cans of beer.
In the case of the three-year-old, who was on the child protection register in Reading, just 25 of 84 attempts by social workers to visit her family were successful.
Despite her parents’ refusal to co-operate with social services, action was not taken to protect Trae-Bleu Layne, who died of a methadone overdose.
Even when her parents took her on a violent raid on local shops — which ended with a high-speed chase by police, who found the child in the back of a car next to drug-taking paraphernalia — authorities failed to step in to protect the infant."

This heartbreaking story is from England, but I could see it happening here in the US. It's good that we have a system to protect children from abuse, but so often that system is horribly dysfunctional. I've heard dozens of stories about some parents losing custody over misunderstandings, and then truly abusive and negligent people are given second, third, and tenth chances.We still have a long way to go before every child is safe and nurtered.

No comments: