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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 77190 Find in a Library
Title: Testimony of Mary Lee Allen, Children's Defense Fund, Washington, DC, Before the Senate Subcommittee on Child and Human Development on Institutionalized Children, January 24, 1979 (From Abuse and Neglect of Children in Institutions, 1979 - Hearings, P 254-275, 1979 - See NCJ-77187)
Author(s): M L Allen
Date Published: 1979
Page Count: 22
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This testimony is based on the Childrens' Defense Fund's (CDF's) litigation on behalf of abused children in institutions, challenging the placement of large numbers of children in inadequate or inappropriate facilities.
Abstract: In addition, a CDF study of children in adult jails, and a recently completed 3-year study of public responsibility for children placed in out-of-home care by various child care systems are reported. In Gary W. v. the State of Louisiana (1976) the CDF (in conjunction with the Justice Department) successfully challenged Louisiana's use of the federally financed AFDC Foster Care Program to send hundreds of children away from their families and communities to out-of-state residential placements in inadequate and inappropriate facilities. In Larry W. v. Stone, CDF challenged the placement of South Carolina children in county jails maintained for adults. A recent CDF study of homeless children in seven States found repeatedly that children were removed from their homes unnecessarily, placed in inappropriate facilities, often at great distance from families, and left indefinitely, often at Federal expense. A GAO study concluded that licensing and placing agencies did not enforce licensing standards and did not ensure that facilities were maintained acceptable. Moreover, State placing agencies have been found to use unlicensed facilities. Current Federal policies fail to ensure adequate procedural and substantive protections for children at risk of removal from families. Federal funding patterns even act as disincentives to the development of strong family support programs. The CDF supports legislation to erase current Federal fiscal incentives and to provide protection such as periodic reviews of the status of children in foster or residential care as well as due process protection both prior to and during placement.
Index Term(s): Abused children; Child custody; Childrens Defense Fund; Constitutional Rights/Civil Liberties; Criminal investigation; Federal programs; Foster homes; Residential child care institutions
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