Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Need a little inspiration today?

Take a moment to listen to this powerful podcast - Derek Clark shares his triumphant life through 13 years of foster care to living the life of his dreams.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Gary James

After creating stained glass art in its traditional form for over twenty years, Gary James realized that he needed to free himself from its inherent limitations. Flat glass has a narrow selection of colors – he wanted a palette that was more expansive. More importantly, where he had once relished emulating the design styles of the likes of Tiffany, Lafarge and Wright, he yearned to break free of them and find his own way.

Drawn to the qualities of pastel and watercolor, James thought it might be possible, and perhaps much more interesting, to apply those techniques to glass. Traditional methods of applying vitreous paints (kiln fired glass paints) result in a rather narrow palette of color. However, through numerous trials James discovered that he could customize the color by taking advantage of enamels that fired at different temperatures and by applying the paint to both the front and back sides of the glass. Further, by layering multiple pieces of glass one behind the other James was able to achieve an abstraction and depth of color unlike anything he had ever seen in stained glass.

The “creative” process challenged James to devise still more innovative ways to apply washes and textures to the surfaces of the glass. “As I worked, an unexpected and welcome evolution of the process occurred,” said James. “This divergence from old traditions, this new direction, this more primitive and impressionistic approach has enabled me to achieve a deeper level of expressiveness. A level that goes beyond what many even consider to be stained glass. My desire is to delve into and more fully explore this journey that I can consider to be my own.”

Check out Gary's website to see the glass masterpieces he has created!

Marc Hollander, D.D.S.

Dentist by day and a budding glass artist by night, Marc Hollander is one of the featured artists for our Autumn Wine Celebration. Hollander spends his free time blowing glass at the Columbus non-profit studio, Glass Axis. Hollander’s favorite glass blowing techniques include the beautiful Venetian cane working and incalmo. His work incorporates bright, vivid colors involving multiple color applications, intricately designed shapes that are both fun and beautiful.

Glass art comes naturally to Marc. Since he was a kid building models, he has always enjoyed working with his hands, making “things”. Whether it be crafting topiary sculptures for his unusual back yard or making one-of-a-kind sculptures in his patients’ mouths, it is all the same. “I get to take something from an idea to something that can be looked at, seen, and enjoyed,” said Hollander. “Blowing glass is an extension of this.”

From making a sketch, to planning which colors to use and how to use them, to taking the first gather of 2100 F molten glass and blowing a bubble in it, every step is a thrill for Hollander. “The process never ends,” says Hollander. “I always try to push my creative and physical limits to come up with something new and different.”

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

3 Babes and a Baker

Carla Saunders is a former bakery owner who took a converted a gyro truck, and turned it into Columbus’ first mobile gourmet cupcake truck. The Three Babes and a Baker truck has since been outfitted to bake and store a variety of cupcakes ranging from German chocolate to red velvet to pineapple upside down cake.

In addition to operating at The Market at 15th and High and at the NW corner of the High and Gay St Intersection, Three Babes and a Baker also caters private events such as birthday parties and other gatherings.

Contact Carla Saunders, head baker, to order your own Three Babes and a Baker cupcakes.

Follow 3 Babes and a Baker on Twitter and Facebook.

The Wine Bistro

With two locations in the Columbus Metro area, The Wine Bistro is a warm, inviting restaurant and bar that has been quenching residents' thirst and hunger for many years.

Serving an extensive array of fine wines, beers and light dishes, The Wine Bistro is the perfect mix of charm and convenience. The Bistro's expert staff is always nearby to offer advice and information about the wines they serve and they make every visit a truly educational experience.

Visit one of The Wine Bistro locations and RSVP for our Autumn Wine Celebration today!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Meet Lisa Horkin - One of Our Featured Artists

This year, we are adding a unique element to NCALP's Autumn Wine Celebration by featuring the works of local glass artists within the Columbus community at our event. In addition to having their works on display during the event, the artists will be in attendance to answer questions.

A native Ohioan, Lisa Horkin has worked as an artist in Columbus for 10 years. In addition to creating art of her own, she has also lectures and teaches art to others. Horkin received her BFA from the Columbus College of Art and Design where she majored in painting.

Nine years ago, she expanded into glass blowing as a means of creative expression. Lisa specializes in smaller glass objects and works primarily at the Glass Axis studio in Grandview and she also has a small studio in her home.

Check out some of her pieces!

Save the Date!

Save the date for our Autumn Wine Celebration on Friday, October 21 at the beautiful Bluestone located downtown Columbus. This year's event will include wine tasting, deserts from 3 Babes and a Baker, live music and works of local glass artists. 

RSVP today and reserve your seat at NCALP's annual fundraiser.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Calling Attorneys and Social Workers!

Are you looking for CLE/CEUs in child welfare and adoption law? Register today for our Summer Institute courses and earn up to 23.5 continuing education credits!

For more information, check out our online flyer or visit our website.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Interracial Families in Friendship, Adoption Group

Siobhan Wolf Shafer
accepted the award on
behalf of the group. 
For the past 11 years, Interracial Families in Friendship has provided social interaction, support and community for adoptive families with African American children, biracial children and children from the African diaspora. The group’s monthly meetings are a vital resource for families in the Central Ohio area.

Congratulations to all of our Adoption Hero Award recipients and thank you for your hard work and dedication!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Angela Lariviere, Adoption/Foster Care Professional

Angela Lariviere is the founder and facilitator of the Coalition on Homelessness and Housing in Ohio’s Youth Empowerment Program. This program helps homeless youth become active community members and productive citizens through participation in community service, leadership training and advocacy activities.

Angela has played a crucial role in changing policies to allow teenagers in family shelters and she also assisted a local shelter in building a safer building with improved services for children and teens. She has partnered with national organizations to increase homeless education funding and participated in over 1,000 community services hours this year.

Angela’s passion stems from her own experience as a homeless youth. As an adult, she and her husband have served as guardians of multiple children, including their younger siblings, eight nieces and nephews and 10 other children. These youth lived with the Larivieres for periods of time ranging from two months to four years while they attended school, worked toward their GEDs or waited for housing, college or financial aid.

Check back at the end of the week to meet our final Adoption Hero Award recipient!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Dontell Higgins, Youth Hero

At eighteen years old, Dontell became involved with Children Services as a result of serious family issues. Despite these difficulties, Dontell thrived both academically and athletically.

A natural leader, Dontell was chosen to be the captain of his football team and received the Ohio Capital Conference scholar athlete award. Dontell also placed third in the 100 meter dash at the Division 1 state championship. Additionally, his 4x100 meter relay team finished in the top 10 at the outdoor nationals in Greensboro, North Carolina.

In 2010, Dontell graduated from Groveport Madison High School as an honor roll student with a 3.4 GPA.

He is currently enrolled at Kent State University and majoring in Actuarial Science. Dontell is also a member of Kent State’s track team and competes in the 100 and 200 meter dashes and the 4x100 meter relay.

He plans to graduate from college and someday represent the U.S. in the Olympics.

Check back next week to meet more of our Adoption Hero Award recipients.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Ray and Matt Lees, Adoption Advocates

Worthington residents, Ray and Matt Lees, are the adoptive fathers of eight children and are our first Adoption Hero Award recipients.

In addition to volunteering at their childrens' school and on the Worthington Estates PTA, the Lees continually support initiatives for children, especially those in Haiti.

In 2010, the Lees led an initiative to gather donations of peanut butter to send to those affected by the earthquake disaster in Haiti. They collected 669 jars of peanut butter -- and then the Lees family matched the donation.

Every year, the Lees also send beanie babies to the Becky DeWine School in Cite Soleil, Haiti. Over the years, the Lees have donated over 3,000 beanie babies.

For more information on the Lees, take a look this article from the New York Times.

Check back tomorrow to meet our next Adoption Hero Award recipient!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Adoption Heroes

As a part of our Forever Home Adoption Celebration, we presented the Adoption Hero Award to outstanding Central Ohio groups and individuals who are involved with adoption and child advocacy. 
The Adoption Hero Award was created to recognize the achievements and contributions of the adoption and foster care community.

We are continually impressed with the dedication, innovation and enthusiasm displayed by adoption professionals, advocates and groups, as well as children who were adopted or in foster care. It is our hope that the achievements of our 2011 award recipients will inspire others to actively work to make a difference in the life of a child.

Check back during the next few weeks to meet our Adoption Hero Award Recipients!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Fostering Transition: Court and Agency Collaboration to Improve Outcomes for Foster Youth

June 22, 2011 ~ 12:30 - 5:00 pm at Capital University Law School and sponsored by the National Center for Adoption Law & Policy

This no–cost continuing education session for judges, attorneys, caseworkers, supervisors, and other child welfare professionals will focus on selected legal issues related to foster youth transition to independent living and ways in which professional stakeholders may collaborate for better outcomes for Ohio's transitioning foster youth. Participants will also be introduced to new resources and materials developed to assist them with transition planning and implementation.

Click HERE to Register!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

What do you think about this campaign?

Fairfield county and Lancaster High School campaign as part of National Child Abuse Prevention Month.

Here is a link to their 30-second PSA as well:

Tuesday, May 24, 2011


Join us next Saturday, June 4 at COSI for the Forever Home Adoption Celebration! We’ll have educational sessions for adults, and fun activities for the kids. Plus, your $5 event fee and event participation also provide admission to COSI!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

May is National Foster Care Month

You Can Change a Lifetime!
Each May, National Foster Care Month provides an opportunity to shine a light on the experiences of the more than 400,000 children and youth in the foster care system. The campaign raises awareness about the urgent needs of these young people and encourages citizens from every walk of life to get involved – as foster or adoptive parents, volunteers, mentors, employers or in other ways. Thanks to the many advocates, child welfare professionals, elected officials and support groups around the country, the total number of children in foster care has decreased over recent years. But more help is needed. Click here to find out how you can change a lifetime!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Time is running out to nominate your hero!

NCALP is seeking nominations for the new Adoption Hero awards. We encourage you to nominate deserving members of the adoption and foster care community, including yourself, your child or your organization. The deadline to nominate is Monday, May 2 at 5 p.m. Use this online form to nominate your hero today. The Adoption Hero Awards are presented by Columbus Parent.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Child Welfare in the News - April 20, 2011

AL: Barrie Center for Children a central part of sex crime investigations
Gadsden Times April 19, 2011
It seems incomprehensible that someone can sexually abuse a child, but it's a daily reality for those who work at the James M. Barrie Center For Children.

DE: Court upholds woman’s ‘de facto’ parental rights
The New Journal April 19, 2011
The order, issued April 12 and released Monday, denies a request to re-argue the case and leaves standing the court’s decision in March to recognize the “de facto” parental rights of the woman who was neither a biological or adoptive parent. The ruling acknowledges a 2009 change to Delaware law that grants status to de facto parents, those who have established a committed level of care and involvement with a child.

ID: Abuse cases worse
Idaho Mountain Express and Guide April 20, 2011
Life-threatening and emergency child-protection calls are increasing in Idaho, according to the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare, prompting child welfare workers to urge anyone who suspects child abuse or neglect to report it as soon as possible.

ME: Meeting the special health care needs of foster children
Bangor Daily News April 18, 2011
Foster children often come from an environment in which their health care needs are neglected. It has only been in the last quarter-century that the unique health care needs of foster children have started to receive the attention they deserve.

NE: Nebraska child abuse hotline took more calls in 2010 than in previous years
The Republic April 20, 2011
Nebraska's child abuse and neglect hotline is taking more calls than it used to. The state Department of Health and Human Services says the hotline received 28666 calls reporting child abuse or neglect last year. That's up from 24173 in 2006.

OR: Bill to help Ore. foster kids in college struggles
The Columbian April 17, 2011
People in both parties are sympathetic, but The Oregonian newspaper reports the bill is struggling because its price tag is $1 million.

PA: Mennonite group that cares for babies of jailed women needs to be licensed, says report
Philadelphia Inquirer April 20, 2011
A Mennonite group that arranges foster care for babies born to incarcerated women in Philadelphia would need to meet the same licensing and oversight requirements as any foster program, and have the children in its care monitored by the Department of Human Services.

US: Ban Will Remain on US Adoptions: Ambassador
Voice of America April 19, 2011
Since 2009, Cambodia has been trying to meet international standards for adoption. However, US officials and child protection groups say the country's policies are not ready.

US: Foster Care's Web Of Policies, Problems And Promise Keeps Kids In Waiting
The Huffington Post April 19, 2011
In the first part of this two-part series highlighting the hardships that half a million foster children face each year, Enrique Montiel shared his story. As a foster care alumnus, he now works as a social worker within the system that took him, and his five siblings, from his parents when he was only 9.

US: When Children's Books and Movies Misrepresent Adoption
ChicagoNow (blog) April 18, 2011
Many children's books build these types of dialogues into sections where a child feels upset, and I think it does a disservice to the families built through adoption. I wonder how other adoptive parents and adopted children feel about this. . .

Child Welfare in the News is distributed at no charge by Child Welfare Information Gateway (, a service of the Children's Bureau/ACF/HHS ( It features news stories on topics of interest to child welfare and related professionals. Inclusion does not imply endorsement of any view expressed in an article, and opinions or views do not reflect those of Child Welfare Information Gateway, the Children's Bureau, or staff.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Don’t forget about the Adoption Hero Awards!

NCALP is seeking nominations for this new award. We encourage you to nominate deserving members of the adoption and foster care community, including yourself, your child or your organization. The deadline to nominate is Monday, May 2 at 5 p.m. Use this online form to nominate your hero today. The Adoption Hero Awards are presented by Columbus Parent.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Forever Home Adoption Celebration
Saturday, June 4, 2011

The National Center for Adoption Law & Policy, in partnership with Leadership Columbus, is proud to invite you to the Forever Home Adoption Celebration. Please join families and adoption professionals at COSI in Columbus for this adoption ‘expo’ and celebration on Saturday, June 4, 2011. The only event of its kind in Central Ohio, Forever Home celebrates success stories of families created through adoption and provides a platform for the entire adoption community to build adoption awareness.
Click here for more details.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Do you know an Adoption Hero? Recognize them!

We are now seeking nominations for the new Adoption Hero Awards. We encourage you to nominate deserving members of the adoption and foster care community, including yourself, your child or your organization. The deadline to nominate is Monday, May 2 at 5 p.m. Use this online form to nominate your hero today. The Adoption Hero Awards are presented by Columbus Parent.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

OFCA Testifies on Adoption and Kinship Budget

Here is the powerful testimony Marynell provided before the House Finance Subcommittee on Health and Human Services on behalf of Ohio Family Care Association (OFCA). Incredible Testimony!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

April is National Abuse Prevention Month

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Adoption Hero Awards

The National Center for Adoption Law & Policy is seeking nominations for the Central Ohio Adoption Hero Awards, presented by Columbus Parent. We encourage you to nominate deserving members of the adoption and foster care community, including yourself, your child or your organization. The winners will be announced at the 2011 Forever Home Adoption Celebration, June 4 at COSI.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Summer Institutes Registration Open! CLE and CEU are available!

We are pleased to announce that the registration for the 2011 Summer Institutes is now available. Anyone interested in adoption and child welfare topics should consider registering for either (or both!) the Interdisciplinary Child Welfare Institute (ICWI) or the Summer Adoption Law Institute, (SALI) which are organized by the National Center for Adoption Law & Policy at Capital University Law School.

The Interdisciplinary Child Welfare Institute (ICWI) will take place July 25-29 and the Summer Adoption Law Institute (SALI) will take place August 1–5 at Capital University Law School in Columbus, Ohio. Both courses are dynamic, one-week intensive two credit hour classes.
Click here for more information.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Adoption Academy Domestic Track to begin April 4th in Columbus, Ohio

The Adoption Academy, presented by The National Center for Adoption Law & Policy and Nationwide Children’s Hospital, takes the mystery out of the adoption process. This 12 week series offers prospective adoptive parents objective information in a comprehensive and sensitive manner to help prospective parents make informed choices. Please pass this link on to anyone you know who may be considering adoption.

Capital Law students help ease foreclosure worries

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Child Welfare in the News - March 22, 2011

AZ: Adoption priorities: SB 1188 would favor married couples
Jewish News of Greater Phoenix March 4, 2011
"The intent of the legislation is to establish the principle that, where possible, children being placed for adoption deserve the chance to have a mom and dad," Herrod said. "If all things are equal, and the choice is between a married mom and dad and a single adult, the child should be placed with a married mom and dad." That sounds innocuous, but it isn't, according to Dana Naimark, president and CEO of the Children's Action Alliance, since approximately 30 percent of children adopted out of the Arizona foster-care system are brought into single-parent homes.

CA: New OC rule aims to protect kids from registered sex March 22, 2011A new ordinance is pushing to make it a crime for registered sex offenders to enter areas where children regularly gather in Orange County. If the ordinance is adopted, it would limit where registered sex offenders would be allowed to go. There are more than 3,000 registered sex offenders in Orange County alone.

CA: Local Congressman Pete Stark Fights Confiscation of Foster Children’s Social Security Benefits
Bay Citizen March 22, 2011
For foster children like Myers, access to OASDI and SSI benefits can be a critical boon. But according to the report, state administrations redirect $150 million a year in such benefits to pay for the routine administration of foster care: shelter, food and other necessities.

FL: Florida child welfare workers need better pay, lighter caseloads to be more effective
News-Press March 22, 2011
To achieve a high degree of effectiveness, a strong motivating vision and a well-paid staff (paid, for example, as well as teachers) are needed. Much lower caseloads are also required (40 cases is an impossible load). The 12 to 15 recommended by the Child Welfare League of America makes it possible to be effective.

FL: First foster students about to graduate from UCFOrlando Sentinel March 22, 2011
Dinoski was one of approximately 23,000 Florida children living in foster care as a teenager, one of about 1,000 who left the foster care program when turning 18, and one of the 2.5 percent much closer to graduating from college, according the statistics from the department's handbook, "On Your Own But Not Alone.",0,5153617.story

IA: State penalizes Family ResourcesQuad City Times March 22, 2011
The state of Iowa has temporarily downgraded Family Resources Inc.’s license after an investigation into an alleged sexual assault at the Wittenmyer Youth Center campus in Davenport.

NH: Hospitals, families bear brunt of NH budget cuts
The Associated Press State & Local Wire March 22, 2011
State Rep. Neal Kurk, a Weare Republican, told the House Finance Committee that his subcommittee's recommendations total $207 million in cuts to services and programs funded from state taxes in the Department and Health and Human Services' budget. The cuts will mean the loss of another $165 million in federal funds for the programs.

NY: Reintroducing Regina Calcaterra, Foster Child March 22, 2011
After months in the political spotlight, the 44-year-old attorney and New Suffolk resident, who grew up in poverty in an abusive family environment, is now spearheading an effort to get the word out about You Gotta Believe, a Coney-Island based organization dedicated to helping foster children on Long Island become adopted into permanent homes before they age out of the county's system at 18 or 21— and become homeless.

NY: Judge orders city, ACS to ID case workers who monitored still-missing boy, 7
New York Post March 21, 2011
Judge John Gleeson in Brooklyn federal court threw out the suit against the city and its Administration for Children's Services agency, but ruled that Rodriguez now can bring a new lawsuit against individual workers from ACS and St. Vincent's Services, whom she blames for not supervising her boy's foster care.

OH: Baby Vanessa case revealed flaws in state’s parental registry system
Dayton Daily News March 19, 2011
Under Ohio law, fathers are given 30 days to make a paternity claim through what is known as the Ohio Putative Father Registry. Mills registered on June 25, 2008 — 12 days after Vanessa’s birth at Miami Valley Hospital and nine days before Doss brought her home to California. Under current law, an attorney, adoption agency or parent is required to search the registry before an adoption is finalized, but not before the baby is placed in a prospective home. Critics say that can set the stage for a complicated custody battle.

OK: Helping churches establish foster care and adoption ministries
News OK March 19, 2011
Robin Jones, executive director of the Office of Faith-based and Community Initiatives, said the conference is designed to help churches that are interested in establishing foster care and adoption ministries.

OK: Two new reports claim DHS is failing to protect children
Tulsa World March 22, 2011
Based on evidence shared in a federal class-action lawsuit over the state's foster-care system, two experts commissioned by the New York-based Children's Rights group condemn the Oklahoma Department of Human Services as a mismanaged agency.

OR: Oregon Considers Free Tuition For Foster KidsKTVZ March 22, 2011Current and former Oregon foster children could get the opportunity to go to college for free. That's the idea behind a bill getting a public hearing in the Legislature on Tuesday.


JAPAN: Foreigners Looking to Adopt Japanese Earthquake Orphans Need Not ApplyFox News March 22, 2011“I have been receiving many strange emails, from mostly U.S., and was asked, ‘I want girl, less than 6 months old, healthy child,’ Tazuru Ogaway, director of the Japanese adoption agency Across Japan, told “I honestly tell you such a kind of emails makes Japanese people very uncomfortable, because for us, sound like someone who are looking for ‘what I want’ from our terrible disaster.”

Child Welfare in the News is distributed at no charge by Child Welfare Information Gateway (, a service of the Children's Bureau/ACF/HHS ( It features news stories on topics of interest to child welfare and related professionals. Inclusion does not imply endorsement of any view expressed in an article, and opinions or views do not reflect those of Child Welfare Information Gateway, the Children's Bureau, or staff. Other free subscriptions from Child Welfare Information Gateway are available at:

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Child Welfare in the News - March 18, 2011

AR: Alamo ministries appeal dismissal of lawsuit
Associated Press March 17, 2011
An attorney for Tony Alamo Christian Ministries has asked a federal appeals court to reinstate the church's lawsuit against the Arkansas Department of Human Services.

CA: Project Cuddle helps match adoptive families, children
Orange County Register March 17, 2011
Project Cuddle has had a hand in rescuing 676 children since 1996, including one in Fullerton. Project Cuddle is not an adoption agency, but screens families willing to adopt.

CO: Charges filed against parents of missing Colo boys
Associated Press March 17, 2011
Prosecutors in Colorado charged the adoptive parents of two missing brothers with theft, forgery and other crimes Thursday as authorities searched for the children, who disappeared in 2003 without anyone reporting they were gone.

FL: House measure caps child-welfare damages
The News Service of Florida March 17, 2011
A measure that would cap damages for pain and suffering by children in Florida's child welfare system was approved by a House committee Wednesday after impassioned testimony from both supporters and critics.

GA: Pilot program to review use of psychotropic prescription drugs in Georgia's foster care system
Associated Press March 18, 2011
The pilot program will be funded by Casey Family Programs and run out of the Barton Child Law and Policy Center at Emory University Law School in partnership with the Georgia Department of Human Services.

MA: State reneges on college for foster kids, parents charge
WCVB March 17, 2011
Flueckiger received a letter from the state explaining, "the demand for fall fee waivers, unfortunately, has exceeded the $935,000 appropriation for this program" and now "zero funds are available."

MO: Mo. House OKs fund to help recruit foster parents
Associated Press March 18, 2011
The Missouri House has approved legislation that would let taxpayers donate part of their state refunds to support for foster care and adoptions.

NJ: Appeals court rules N.J. woman must adopt baby born through artificial insemination of a surrogate
The Star-Ledger March 18, 2011
The boy, conceived with a donor egg and carried by a surrogate, is not the son of the woman in the eyes of the law because she did not give birth to him and has no genetic link to him, an appellate court declared last month. If she wants be named the child’s mother, she must adopt him, the court said.

NY: Helping parents with children in foster care
Epoch Times March 16, 2011
The city's child welfare system has been making an effort to engage birth parents of children living in foster homes, to help these parents improve their situation and maintain a relationship with their children. The Parent Advocate Initiative (PAI) was created to enlist the help of parents who had successfully resolved their cases and brought their children back to a happier home.

OH: Agency says ethnic foster homes tough to recruit
Columbus Dispatch March 17, 2011
Licensed Muslim foster homes were rare in 2003. And despite what the agency calls an all-out recruiting effort, they still are. "We only have one. But it certainly is not for lack of trying," spokeswoman Doris Calloway Moore said.

OK: Oklahoma failing to protect children in state custody, report alleges
Tulsa World Mach 17, 2011
A national watchdog group released a report Thursday charging the Oklahoma Department of Human Services with failing to protect children in state custody from abuse or neglect.
Report available at

WA: Fatal fire at Arlington foster home forces changes to state policy
The Herald March 18, 2011
One of those changes may include more in-depth fire safety training for caregivers overseeing children under state supervision. A work group also may be assigned to study issues at homes serving children with special needs, according to a report released Thursday.

Child Welfare in the News is distributed at no charge by Child Welfare Information Gateway (, a service of the Children's Bureau/ACF/HHS ( It features news stories on topics of interest to child welfare and related professionals. Inclusion does not imply endorsement of any view expressed in an article, and opinions or views do not reflect those of Child Welfare Information Gateway, the Children's Bureau, or staff. Other free subscriptions from Child Welfare Information Gateway are available at:

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Child Welfare in the News - March 17, 2011

AL: No state funding a possibility for children advocacy centers across Alabama
WAAYTV March 16, 2011
Officials at the National Children's Advocacy Center in Huntsville say it's possible the state's 29 centers could lose around $900,000 in state funding if state legislators approve Governor Robert Bentley's budget proposal.

AR: Debate over unmarried couples adopting or fostering children goes to state Supreme Court this morning
KATV March 17, 2011
The Arkansas Supreme Court will hear oral arguments on the ban on allowing unmarried couples to be foster parents or adopt children. Voters approved the restrictions, known as Arkansas Act One, in November 2008 by 57-percent.

FL: Florida agency defends its work after children found in canal
CNN March 15, 2011
Child welfare officials Tuesday defended their involvement with the family of a woman whose two children were found dead in a south Florida canal, saying Felicia Brown "deserved a chance to have her children back."

FL: Before latest child death, ominous warning signs
Miami Herald March 16, 2011
Before the latest death of a Florida child – 4-month-old Jerry Correa – there were signs of family turmoil that were known to child welfare workers.

FL: Foster care agencies looking for legal shield
Palm Beach Post March 16, 2011
Legislation capping legal damages for agencies providing foster care services cleared a House committee Wednesday, despite emotional testimony from opponents who said lawmakers are putting dollars ahead of the safety of children in a troubled system.

NC: Crowd berates Swain commissioners, supports DSS board
Smoky Mountain News March 16, 2011
A large crowd turned out at the Swain County commissioners meeting this week to voice support for the beleaguered Department of Social Services Board. Supporters said local board members tasked with overseeing the agency have been unfairly criticized following the death of 15-month-old baby and a criminal investigation into an alleged cover-up.

OH: Ohio budget would cut funds for kids' caregivers
Associated Press March 16, 2011
The cuts in the proposal include eliminating funding for the Kinship Permanency Incentive program, which provides up to $2,250 over three years for caregivers who are awarded court custody of children.

PA: Philadelphia priest in court over abuser transfers
Associated Press March 15, 2011
Monsignor William Lynn entered a Philadelphia courtroom Monday as the only Roman Catholic church official ever charged with endangering children for allegedly transferring priest-predators to unsuspecting U.S. parishes.

WI: Appleton police look into possible delay of child abuse reports at Janet Berry Elementary School
Post-Crescent March 17, 2011
Police are investigating whether Appleton school officials followed legal protocol in reporting suspicions of child abuse by an elementary school special education teacher.

US: Lesbian, gay parents likely to be anxious, depressed
Between The Lines News March 17, 2011
Same-sex couples with adopted children living in states with anti-gay adoption laws and attitudes had more mental health issues in their first year of parenthood than couples with adopted children living in more accepting states, a new study has found.


ENGLAND/WALES: Hundreds 'sue local authorities over child abuse'
BBC News March 17, 2011
Hundreds of young people are trying to sue local authorities in England and Wales for failing to remove them from abusive homes, lawyers are claiming.

Police seize alleged child sex offenders in worldwide operation
CNN March 16, 2011
Europol said 670 suspects have been identified, 184 arrests have been made, 230 children have been rescued, and investigations are continuing in a case authorities are calling Operation Rescue.

Child Welfare in the News is distributed at no charge by Child Welfare Information Gateway (, a service of the Children's Bureau/ACF/HHS ( It features news stories on topics of interest to child welfare and related professionals. Inclusion does not imply endorsement of any view expressed in an article, and opinions or views do not reflect those of Child Welfare Information Gateway, the Children's Bureau, or staff. Other free subscriptions from Child Welfare Information Gateway are available at:

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Child Welfare in the News - March 16, 2011

CA: California adoption custody battle settlesSan Jose Mercury News March 15, 2011A spokeswoman for Stacey Doss said Tuesday that Doss will drop her petition to adopt baby Vanessa after a settlement was reached in an Ohio courtroom.

FL: Abuse Report Recommends Supervising HomeschoolersHome School Legal Defense Association March 15, 2011The Nubia Report special investigators recommended changing Florida law to mandate supervision of adoptive parents in a way that is not done, to our knowledge, anywhere else in this country. The proposal would enact a state law or rule to require adoptive parents to be visited on a regular basis simply if they decide to teach their children at home.

FL: DCF investigator in Barahona case to appeal her firingPalm Beach Post March 16, 2011Fleary's attorney, Matthew Ladd, said in a statement that he would appeal the decision with the Public Employees Relations Commission.

FL: Prescription drug abuse leads to spike in neglect cases, child protection investigators say
St. Petersburg Times March 14, 2011
Child neglect cases stemming from overuse are up, and many involve seemingly ... Child abuse investigators say cases of child abuse and neglect involving ... Office child protection investigation division saw child welfare court cases ...

IA: Guest opinion column: Bill addresses due rights in cases of child abuse
Des Moines Register March 15, 2011
The Legislature is moving forward with significant revisions to Iowa's child abuse registry. A bill is in process that attempts to reconcile two significant and divergent interests - protecting children while addressing the due process rights of Iowans.

OR: Oregon House endorses bill requiring computer techs to report suspected child March 15, 2011Computer technicians who discover child pornography will be required to report their suspicions under a bill that passed the Oregon House by unanimous vote Tuesday.

US: States' use of foster kids' benefits is assailed
Seattle Post Intelligencer March 15, 2011
With a lawsuit, congressional efforts and a stinging new report, critics of current foster-care policies are accusing child welfare agencies of unfairly confiscating foster youths' government benefits and undermining their prospects when they age out of the system.
Report available 03/16/2011 afternoon at

Child Welfare in the News is distributed at no charge by Child Welfare Information Gateway (, a service of the Children's Bureau/ACF/HHS ( It features news stories on topics of interest to child welfare and related professionals. Inclusion does not imply endorsement of any view expressed in an article, and opinions or views do not reflect those of Child Welfare Information Gateway, the Children's Bureau, or staff. Other free subscriptions from Child Welfare Information Gateway are available at:

Tuesday, March 15, 2011


The National Center for Adoption Law & Policy presents the National Child Welfare & Adoption Moot Court Competition on March 18-19, 2011. Volunteer attorneys and judges/magistrates are needed to judge rounds on March 18th at the Ohio Statehouse and March 19th at the Supreme Court of Ohio. Detailed information i available on the com...petition webpage at:

Child Welfare in the News - March 15, 2011

FL: 'Fatal ineptitude' causes state child welfare shakeup, firings
Florida Courier March 14, 2011
In response to the scathing report of an independent panel, the new secretary of the Florida Department of Children and Families is firing and reprimanding employees, overhauling the state's child abuse hotline and hiring 80 new investigators. Also:

FL: DCF to overhaul abuse hotline after girl's death
Tampa Bay Online March 14, 2011
The head of Florida's child welfare agency announced major changes Monday to an abuse hot line and other sweeping remedies intended to help overburdened child protective investigators after the death of a 10-year-old girl whose body was found in her adoptive father's truck.

IA: Guest opinion column: Bill addresses due rights in cases of child March 13, 2011
It did not specifically include lack of supervision as one of those offenses. And on that basis, the court made its initial ruling. Due to the court's ruling, the DHS determined that it may be forced to remove half of the nearly 60,000 people on the registry.

NV: Cutting child services? Lawmakers shouldn’t gut budgets for critical programs to protect children
Las Vegas Sun March 14, 2011
In testimony before the Legislature this month, Tom Morton, director of the county’s Family Services Department, said things have improved. He said the number of children at the shelter daily has been reduced from more than 200 in 2006 to fewer than 10 last year, and the number of days children stay in foster care has been reduced by 41 percent. More significantly, there have been no deaths of children in an open case since October 2007 — in the first part of that year, there were nine child deaths in open cases.

NH: $209 million slashed from HHS budget ; Deep cuts proposed for social services
Concord Monitor (New Hampshire) March 15, 2011
Last week, Health and Human Services Commissioner Nick Toumpas presented the House Finance Committee with a list of $346 million in potential cuts. Toumpas made clear that he did not support the cuts, which he believes would shift costs to cities and towns and dismantle the infrastructure the department has set up to maintain services for vulnerable citizens.

NY: City to Revise Treatment of Children in Foster CareNew York Times March 14, 2011
New York City is no longer allowed to keep troubled foster-care children in psychiatric hospitals after doctors have recommended their release, and must closely adhere to laws that require such children to be placed in the least restrictive setting possible, after reaching a settlement agreement in federal court last week.

OK: Adoption process decried
Tulsa World (Oklahoma) March 13, 2011
"It's not any one thing they do to you," she explains. "It's a hundred little things that add up to making you feel intimidated and harassed, like you've done something wrong by asking to adopt these precious little children who need a home."

OR: Sex abuse law offers imperfect solutions
Statesman Journal (Salem, Oregon) March 11, 2011
Such was the debate this week when Oregon lawmakers opened the first public hearing on House Bill 3057, which would end the time limits for prosecuting sex crimes against minors. The testimony was vigorous, and the hearing spilled over into a second day.

PA: Fund used to fill gaps in social service budgets will be cut under Gov. Tom Corbett's proposed budget March 14, 2011
If Gov. Tom Corbett’s budget is passed as presented, that money and money for scores of similar programs across the state will disappear. The administration wants to eliminate the fund — a total of $23 million this year split between the state’s 67 counties. Counties use that money, often doled in a few thousand dollars at a time, to fill gaps in their social service budgets and keep vulnerable residents a step ahead of destitution.

TX: A tale of two mamas
The Houston Chronicle March 13, 2011
Robinowitz argued that CPS plotted from the beginning to give the baby to another family and received the cooperation of Judge Shelton, who placed the baby with a foster family pre-cleared for adoption and ordered the mother and the Porters to have no contact with the baby. Unaware of the other couple's intentions to adopt, Porter pressed CPS for months to do the home study that would make her eligible. Whether through incompetence or design, the study was begun but not completed.

US: OC mother wins right to keep Baby Vanessa in a case followed by legal scholarsLos Angeles Times March 14, 2011
The settlement could end legal proceedings in the case, which legal scholars believed had the potential to go to the Supreme Court to explore the issue of children’s rights in foster care situations. Also:


UK: Child abuse images removed fasterBBC News March 15, 2011Internet companies are getting better at removing images of child sexual abuse, according to the charity that monitors the problem.

CAMBODIA & VIET NAM: US envoy to take up Cambodia, Vietnam adoption
Straights Times March 14, 2011
A US ENVOY will head this week to Vietnam and Cambodia to look at ways to resume adoptions, which have been suspended due to concerns over child trafficking, the State Department said on Monday.

JAPAN: Abducted to Japan: Hundreds of American Children Taken
ABC News February 16, 2011
Among the circles of left-behind parents in the U.S., many of them fathers, Japan is known as a safe haven for parental abductions. Once in Japan, the parent who abducted the child is protected by their government's unwillingness to sign the Hague Convention, a treaty that provides for the return of abducted children to the other parent.

Child Welfare in the News is distributed at no charge by Child Welfare Information Gateway (, a service of the Children's Bureau/ACF/HHS ( It features news stories on topics of interest to child welfare and related professionals. Inclusion does not imply endorsement of any view expressed in an article, and opinions or views do not reflect those of Child Welfare Information Gateway, the Children's Bureau, or staff. Other free subscriptions from Child Welfare Information Gateway are available at:

Child Welfare in the News - March 14, 2011

CO: Search for adopted boys uncovers subsidy lapses
Denver Post March 14, 2011
Under Colorado's current system, social workers aren't allowed to check on children once they've been adopted unless there is an allegation of abuse or neglect — even in cases such as the Bryants where the children have been identified as having "special needs" and the parents are eligible for government subsidies.

CT: Bill would expand notice of child abuse complaints
Connecticut Post March 12, 2011
A Connecticut legislative committee has endorsed a proposal that requires state child welfare officials to inform parents who don't have custody of their children about abuse or neglect complaints that involve their children.

FL: 'A thousand skills' required for DCF investigators
Palm Beach Post March 13, 2011
"Some of these cases are extremely difficult," said Mike Watkins, former statewide director of family safety for the Florida Department of Children and Families. "The stakes are tremendously high: the safety and well-being of children. There are a thousand skills a CPI has to have. The human dynamics are very complex."

FL: Scott Says DCF Budget Cuts Needed to Grow Jobs
WCTV March 11, 2011
Talking to reporters after addressing the Broward Workshop, a business group, Scott called recent high-profile cases of children who were horrifically abused or killed "tragic" and said he was confident the Department of Children and Families would devise a plan to address its shortcomings. But he said the agency would still need to make do with less.

FL: Prescription drug abuse leads to spike in neglect cases, child protection investigators say
St. Petersburg Times March 14, 2011
In Pasco County, the news is even worse. Between 2008 and 2010, cases of child neglect or abuse where investigators determined drugs were being misused rose 108 percent, said Kevin Doll, spokesman for the Pasco County Sheriff's Office.

NY: $27,620 grant will be used to investigate abuse, neglect
Buffalo News March 12, 2011
The grant will allow four people who are part of the child abuse response in Niagara County to attend specialized training on conducting forensic interviews for children with special needs

OH: Jury still out on Muslim mom's lawsuit: Family accuses Children Services caseworker of discrimination
Columbus Dispatch March 12, 2011
They remained apart for about a year, during which time Mrs. AbdulSalaam said the agency refused to place her children in a Muslim foster home and allowed the girls to attend a Christian church with their foster parents. Also:

OH: Child advocate argues for funding flexibility from feds
Columbus Dispatch March 11, 2011
Allowing child-welfare agencies to spend federal foster-care money on other programs and services leads to dramatic reductions in the numbers of children removed from their homes, an Ohio advocate told a U.S. Senate committee yesterday.

SC: Child advocacy center grows in case load
NECN March 14, 2011
The CARE House of the Pee Dee provided services to more than 700 neglected and abused children in the Pee Dee last year, making it the second busiest child advocacy center in the state.

UT: Amish, polygamists find common ground on tackling abuse within communities
Salt Lake Tribune March 11, 2011
The Safety Net Clinical Conference brought together about 100 people, including child protective staff, social workers and doctors, to educate them on how best to communicate with and help people from plural families. Polygamists don’t often come to the government for help — Draper didn’t when she left the FLDS Church. If they do reach out, she said, it’s important to treat them as individuals who don’t need to be “rescued.”

WI: Audit finds progress at Bureau of Milwaukee Child Welfare March 13, 2011
"The bureau has made tremendous progress transforming its child welfare system over the last several years improving the basic safety and well-being of the many vulnerable children in its care," Thompson said.


ETHIOPIA: Ethiopian adoptions may be in peril
Washington Times March 11, 2011
As with other countries whose programs have been shut down (i.e. Nepal, Vietnam, Guatemala) to Americans, there have been accusations of child trafficking and the presence of unscrupulous actors who trade on the misfortune of birth families for profit. There have been allegations of coercion of birth mothers to relinquish babies. On the orphanage side, there have been accusations of fraud, in particular, reports that some Americans have been misled about the age of the child they’re adopting

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Child Welfare in the News - March 10, 2011

FL: Relatives fight to adopt Fla. boy found in truckAssociated Press March 9, 2011Isidro and Ana Reyes, who are Victor's biological aunt and uncle, are now seeking custody of the boy. The couple sought to adopt the children after they were placed in foster care in 2004. A judge ultimately ruled that the twins should stay with their then-foster parents, the Barahonas, because they'd already bonded.

FL: Governor's budget slashes child welfareWTSP CBS4 March 9, 2011The governor wants to slash DCF's budget by $179 million. The cuts would eliminate 1,849 positions in the child welfare agency - a 14 percent reduction in its workforce.

FL: Agencies failed to share information about abused Barahona twinsSun Sentinel March 9, 2011There was one thing dozens of social workers, lawyers, family court judges, physicians, psychologists, volunteer guardians and state administrators failed to share: information. And it was abundantly available from school teachers who suspected as far back as 2005 that the twins were abused to the point of torture.

IA: Keep working to fix abusive state registryDes Moines Register March 8, 2011Instead of passing HF 191 out of committee, lawmakers added an amendment to another bill. It requires the Iowa Department of Human Services to work with other agencies and groups to address problems with the registry and report back in December.

MA: Middleborough police say state agency impeded child sex-abuse investigationWareham Courier March 9, 2011Middleborough police say the state Department of Children and Families impeded an investigation that led to the arrest this week of a man accused of sexually abusing three children repeatedly over a nine-year period.

NE: Moratorium proposed on child welfare privatization in three service areasLincoln Journal Star March 8, 2011Members of the Legislature's Health and Human Services Committee said Tuesday they would like to see a moratorium on a return to privatization of child welfare in western, central and northern areas of Nebraska.

OK: Last American Legion Children's Home will remain open, but under a new nameThe Oklahoman March 10, 2011An agreement filed Wednesday in Kay County District Court will allow the Ponca City, Oklahoma, home to change ownership and remain open as the Marland Children's Home.

OK: House passes child protection billKOCO March 9, 2011Under the bill, DHS would have to do a criminal background check on all people in the home the child was placed in.

TN: Oliver Spring couple files $50 million lawsuit over abuse charges, removal of childrenKnoxville News Sentinel March 10, 2011The lawsuit contends the children were uprooted from their home, coerced by children's advocacy groups and state Department of Children's Services employees and others, and placed in inappropriate foster homes.

UT: DCFS budget worries Utah’s social service advocatesThe Salt Lake Tribune March 8, 2011Utah’s social service advocates are doing some last-minute lobbying to eliminate a $5 million cut to the child welfare system that could mean a loss of 50 full-time caseworkers.

ARGENTINA: Where did I come from? Some stolen children don't want to knowNPR March 9, 2011Eight members of the military junta that ran Argentina in the 1970's are now sitting in a courtroom in Buenos Aires. They are accused of trafficking in stolen babies. Those babies are now around 35 years old. Many of them (but as you shall hear, not all) will soon be telling their stories in court.