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Archive for the ‘Illinois Department of Children and Family Services’ Category

Throughout the Covid-19 Pandemic, over 2,700 Children Came into the Custody of Illinois’ Already Struggling Child Welfare System

A year and a half into the Covid-19 Pandemic, the existing problems with Illinois’ child welfare system have worsened. In April 2020, the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) received only 47% of the calls it did in April 2019. This drop in calls was largely attributed to the fact that children were confined to homes and not in as close contact with teachers, police officers, medical professionals, and other mandated reporters who would typically report problems to DCFS. Moreover, last March was the first time national abuse hotlines received a majority of calls from minors reporting on their own behalf. The drop in reports is a worrying trend, according to experts. About 80% of child sexual abuse cases occur without any witnesses. With many children still confined to their homes, the number of unreported abuses is likely to be shockingly high.  Zoom provides some insight for teachers and medical professionals, but it does not always show the full picture of a child’s behavior. Families themselves have been going to police stations to report abuse.

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Civil Rights of Children Violated — Only 37 Emergency Shelter Beds are Available for Youth Across Illinois while Specialized Foster Home Beds Have Not Been Created

Over a thousand children came into state custody in 2020, yet there are less than 40 emergency shelter beds available to these kids, creating a crisis-level shortage of shelter beds. Currently, children that come into the care of the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) have four options:

1) emergency shelters;

2) residential facilities;

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Civil Rights Violations of Hundreds of Children are Left in Psych Wards and Emergency Shelters after DCFS Eliminated Nearly 500 Residential Beds

A Cook County Probate Judge ordered the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) to “get your act together” after DCFS left hundreds of kids in psych words and temporary shelters for months, while taxpayers continually covered the bill. This year alone the bill was about $6.2 million. Judge Murphy added that leaving children in such a limbo isn’t care, it’s torture, and a violation of the Constitution. Charles Golbert, Cook County Public Guardian, agreed that this situation is a disgrace. Judge Murphy ordered DCFS to immediately find placements for eight of these children, “or else.”

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