Tag Archives: child abuse

What is Environmental Neglect of a Child

I finished a five hour long hearing (known as a CAPTA hearing) appealing the finding of neglect by the Cabinet for Health and Family Services, Department for Protection and Permanency (“Cabinet”). I will not know the outcome of this for at least thirty (30) days and even then the recommendation by the hearing officer will not be final. So, I do not want to comment on this specific case. However, it was an “environmental neglect” investigation that resulted in a finding of neglect and I discovered in the hearing that the investigation worker did not even know the regulatory requirements for…. Continue reading

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The Cabinet for Health & Family Services encounter a limit on their authority

The Cabinet can no longer base a finding of abuse or neglect merely on refusal to sign a plan and parents should not cave to the threat of legal action for mere refusal to sign. Instead, “the risk of harm must be more than a mere theoretical possibility, but an actual and reasonable potential for harm.” Make no mistake: I want parents to be held accountable and for the Cabinet to be able to keep children safe from abuse and neglect, but they cannot have unchecked power and discretion in pursuing their mandates. Parents do have rights in this country. Continue reading

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Best Practice in Dependency, Abuse & Neglect Matters

I am writing this to correct any idea that I inadvertently promoted that being adversarial with the Cabinet is the way to win your case (I mean adversarial in the sense of ones attitude rather than in the sense that the court process is an adversarial process). Those criticisms are designed mainly for a global change in the system through political action; they are not meant to fuel a personal vendetta in an individual case. Continue reading

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“Reasonable efforts” has real meaning

A recent decision of the Court of Appeals illustrates a an omission of the Cabinet for Health and Family Services that seems all too common. In the unpublished opinion, M.G.F. II v. CHFS, 2006-CA-002093-ME (March 21, 2008)(NOT to be published), … Continue reading

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Improving Child Protection in Kentucky (Moment of Silence) postscript:

I followed up regarding my concerns, posted here, about Representative Stan Lee’s sweeping and innaccurate portrayal of ALL the family court judges in Fayette County being against ALL of HB 151. I have confirmed from a very knowledgeable and reliable … Continue reading

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Improving Child Protection in Kentucky Postscript (or – a moment of silence, please)

The title of this article from today’s Herald Leader was a bit too prophetic to be accidental: “Child protection revisions all but dead“. The impetus for this bill began back with the Office of Inspector General’s report many long months … Continue reading

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Words to give pause

Blogger’s like to have readers – otherwise they would just keep a journal and hide it under their mattress. So, when someone says “I read your blog”, there is usually a certain gratification. However, when that person is a judge … Continue reading

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