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Archive for June, 2010

Florida Child Advocate Lawyer Howard Talenfeld Receives President’s Award of Merit

June 25th, 2010   No Comments   News & Events

Florida foster child and advocacy attorney Howard Talenfeld today was given the Florida Bar Association’s President’s Award of Merit.

The award was presented by Florida Bar President Jesse Diner during the General Assembly meeting at the Florida Bar’s Annual Convention at the Boca Raton Resort and Club. Talenfeld was lauded for helping build consensus on representation legislation as the Chair of the Florida Bar Legal Needs of Children Committee.

“Although the Florida Board of Governors approved this legislation as a position of the Florida Bar, obtaining the support of the Florida Legislature is a huge, next step.” Talenfeld said. “We cannot change our focus until this legislation is passed, which would give the right to foster children to have their own attorney appear in their dependency case and state paid attorneys in critical cases.”

Also during the assembly, Mayanne Downs was installed as the Florida Bar’s 62nd President, and Scott G. Hawkins was installed as President-Elect.

Broward Day’s Legislative Wrap Up Luncheon Awards Local Advocates

June 21st, 2010   No Comments   Advocacy, News & Events

Broward Days recently held its Legislative Wrap Up Luncheon at the Riverside Hotel. The event honored local advocates, including children’s rights attorney Howard Talenfeld.

Talenfeld received the “Community Advocate Award” for his work protecting the rights and needs of society’s most vulnerable citizens, including foster children, the developmentally disabled and the mentally ill.

“Howard exemplifies the consistent and effective dialogue with our legislature that is the core of Broward days. He is a role model for respectful, civil, yet forceful advocacy,” aaid Jerome Majzlin, Broward Days Executive Director.

The event, held on June 9, featured a presentation from State Representative Ari Porth, Chair, Broward Delegation, as well as the special message “From Tally to our Towns,” presented by Keynote Speaker Craig Zinn of Craig Zinn Automotive. Citrix Systems received the Outstanding Corporate Citizen award.

Miami Herald: Suspension of Miami Doctor Lifted in Denis Maltez case

As reported by the Miami Herald, an appeals court has set aside the Department of Health’s emergency suspension of Miami psychiatrist Steven L. Kaplan, accused of over-prescribing anti-psychotic medication to an autistic child.

The boy, Denis Maltez, died in May 2007 at age 12. The medical examiner said he stopped breathing in part because of the heavy prescription drugs he was taking, but the psychiatrist disputes that.

The May 26 ruling by the First District Court of Appeal stayed the May 7 emergency suspension issued by Surgeon General Ana Viamonte Ros “pending a final disposition” of the case, records show. That can take months, and if the physician contests it, years.

According to child advocate and Broward County attorney Howard Talenfeld, who represented Denis’ mother, Martha Quesada, in a civil suit over the boy’s death, he had not heard about the appeals court ruling. In any event, the suit against Kaplan “is over,” Talenfeld said, indicating it has been settled.

Read the entire story here

Law Firm Lobbyists Convince Florida Legislature, Governor to Pass Claims Bill to Help Former Foster Child Raped by Foster Father

Lobbyists and attorney advocates from the Fort Lauderdale law firm Colodny, Fass, Talenfeld, Karlinsky & Abate, P.A. successfully convince the Florida Legislature and Governor Charlie Crist to pass a claims bill to help  a former foster child raped by her foster father.

According to the Naples Daily News, Gov. Charlie Crist has signed a bill that will release $1.2 million to the guardian of a mentally retarded woman who had a baby after being raped as a teen by her foster father in Immokalee.

The claims bill Crist signed Thursday afternoon was approved by the Legislature and releases the remainder of a $1.3 million settlement by the state Department of Children and Families to Darlene Achille, the guardian for her sister, Pierreisna, 26, and her 9-year-old daughter.

“The next step is obviously getting the money,” said attorney Richard Filson of Sarasota, who filed the lawsuit in 2002. “I talked to Pierreisna and she is very happy. … They’re living in a small apartment. It’s good news to them.”

Read the entire story here

DBR: Broward Judge Frusciante – Chief Judge of the Dependency and Juvenile Delinquency – Resigns

Broward County, Florida Circuit Judge John Frusciante, chief judge of the dependency and juvenile delinquency divisions, is leaving the bench in October.

Frusciante, who did not return calls to the Daily Business Review by deadline Friday, did not state his reasons for leaving in his resignation letter to Gov. Charlie Crist, saying, “I now submit to you my intention to resign from that position effective Oct. 29.”

“He cared so much about individual children and cases,” said Child Advocate Attorney Howard Talenfeld of Colodny Fass Talenfeld Kalinsky & Abate in Fort Lauderdale and president of Florida’s Children First, a statewide group of child advocates. “He always saw the systemic problems and always brought the child welfare community together to solve them.”

Read the entire story here