Child Advocates Condemn Seizure of Brother of Child Killed in Foster Care
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Aug. 20 /PRNewswire/ — A national non-profit child
advocacy group has condemned the Massachusetts Department of Social Services
for needlessly taking away the newborn brother of a child killed in foster
The National Coalition for Child Protection Reform charged that the case
is at least the third this year in which a child welfare agency has sought to
divert attention from its own fatal errors by attacking a birth parent.
The latest case involves Diana Ross, of Ware, Massachusetts, whose
children were taken in 1999 after one of the children, then three-year-old
Kyle, twice got out of the house alone, leading to a “lack of supervision”
“Rather than help Ross better supervise the child, Massachusetts
authorities threw him into foster care,” said NCCPR Executive Director Richard
Wexler. “But the foster parents also may have had trouble supervising Kyle.
In June, the foster parents’ Rottweiler killed the boy.”
Days after announcing she would sue the state, Ross gave birth to a baby
boy, Aaron. Just one day after Aaron was born, he too was taken, almost
literally from his mother’s arms. DSS says the hospital filed a complaint.
But the hospital says it saw no evidence of abuse or neglect and was ordered
to file the complaint by DSS.
Aaron is now in foster care, where he is almost certainly suffering
emotionally by missing a crucial opportunity to bond with his mother during
the first days of his life, Wexler said. “The real reason Aaron was taken
almost certainly was to divert attention from the state’s own failure to
protect his older brother. Deaths in foster care provoke questions about
whether agencies have too much power to remove children and whether that power
needs to be curbed. The best way to deflect such questions is to smear the
Wexler said that in at least two other recent cases in which children died
in foster care after being needlessly removed from their homes, one in Maine,
the other in Ohio, agencies rushed to do just that, rather than admit that
they never needed to take away the children in the first place.