For years child welfare officials have sent thousands of foster care children to different states than their hometowns to facilities such as mental institutions, where they were beaten and sexually assaulted by workers and other residents.
Children as young as 7 were sent to different states like California, Michigan, Ohio and Utah. One girl, originally from Chicago, was sent to Michigan, Arkansas, Ohio and Tennessee where she was sedated and then sexually assaulted by an employee. Unfortunately her story is not uncommon as countless children were sent across the map to different facilities where negligence and abuse took place unreported or unsupervised.
Reporters who tried to investigate what really happened, examined thousands of pages of police reports in addition to interviewing families and the foster children themselves. It was discovered that even when the institution’s employees and police documented the allegations of abuse, the reports were not always, sometimes rarely, acted on.
Child welfare advocates say that placing children out of state should be a last resort as it disrupts the family bonds and can harm a child’s development. “You’re removing them from their neighborhood, their community, and it makes it more challenging to have visits,” said Moira Weir, child welfare director for Hamilton County in Ohio.
Although the number of out of state placements has declined since the data has been released to the public, some states such as Illinois, Ohio and Oregon have actually increased sending kids out of state.
If you, or someone you know, was a victim of a foster care sexual assault now is the time to seek help.
The Child Victims Act has a one-year window in some states, some more, some less, for adults who were abused as children to come forward against their perpetrators. Now is the time to act and empower yourselves and begin the healing process.
Jeff Herman and his team only handle sexual abuse cases and have represented over 2,000 victims since 1997. The firm offers free consultations and works on a contingency basis. Now is the time to reach out, seek justice and begin to heal.
Please contact us today to discuss your options.