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Tampa Bay Times: Pinellas sheriff blasted foster agency, but his investigators removed children at a higher rate than any other county

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As reported by the Tampa Bay Times, Pinellas Sheriff Bob Gualtieri in November announced a criminal investigation into Eckerd Connects after a child was injured and another overdosed at an unlicensed Largo office where foster children that the agency could not place slept in “deplorable conditions.” Read more here.

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Florida DCF confirmed flaws with the handling of child abuse complaints concerning foster parents following USA Today story

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Several tragic cases of Justice for Kids Partner Stacie Schmerling were recently featured in USA Today concerning the failures of the Department of Children and Families (DCF) to investigate and respond to credible complaints against foster care providers to ensure children are safe.   Complaints to Florida’s abuse hotline about... View Article

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Northern Illinois Academy to Shutdown Permanently Following an Investigation Over Allegations of Child-on-child Sexual Abuse, Treatment & Safety Concerns

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A residential school operated by Sequel Youth and Family Services is set to permanently shutdown its operations. Northern Illinois Academy (NIA), located in Aurora, Illinois, is an 87-bed facility that receives funding from the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS), the Department of Healthcare and Family Services (HFS), and... View Article

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In Memory of a Foster Child that Died a Year Ago After a Chokehold, Michigan is to Ban the Use of Restraints on Children Living in Group Homes

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On April 29, 2020, 16-year-old Cornelius Fredrick  threw a sandwich at another child during lunch at Lakeside Academy, a Sequel Youth and Family Services facility for at risk children in Michigan. In response to the sandwich incident, seven adult male staff members held little Cornelius on the floor for more than 10... View Article

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Foster children are being sent to out-of-state mental health facilities where they are abandoned, abused, and sexually assaulted.

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A last resort procedure available to child welfare officials is sending foster children to out-of-state mental health institutions. Usually, these fragile children suffer from severe medical and psychiatric disorders that require specialized care. However, officials have been abusing this option, especially in Illinois, by using it far too often and... View Article

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