Who is the Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition?

Our mission is to reverse the trend of mass incarceration in Colorado. We are a coalition of nearly 7,000 individual members and over 100 faith and community organizations who have united to stop perpetual prison expansion in Colorado through policy and sentence reform.

Our chief areas of interest include drug policy reform, women in prison, racial injustice, the impact of incarceration on children and families, the problems associated with re-entry and stopping the practice of using private prisons in our state.

If you would like to be involved please go to our website and become a member.


Sunday, April 13, 2008

Lost In The System

There are more than 20,000 children in Colorado who have a parent in the system. We don't have an exact number of how many end up in the foster care systme but the number are huge.

A lot of people tried to do the right thing for Jeff. And yet, it all went very wrong.

When a neighbor saw what she thought were choke marks on his little sister's neck, she reported it.

Adams County human services responded quickly. Investigators talked to the children in person and away from their mother. They examined the kids and took pictures of marks and bruises. And when they were convinced their mother's boyfriend was hurting them, social workers whisked Jeff and his little brother and sister off to foster homes.

In the nearly six years since, one set of foster parents was accused of abusing Jeff, and another set rejected him. Two attorneys have represented him, a truckload of therapists have examined, diagnosed and treated him, and at least three caseworkers have been assigned to him. He has been up for adoption, then not. His brother and sister have been adopted by their grandparents; Jeff hasn't seen them in nearly two years.

When children the system is supposed to protect die of abuse or neglect, as happened to 13 Colorado kids last year, it gets attention — and this year a state investigation.

Not so when they survive.


The Denver Post

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

I was a child raised in a large family. One or more of us always had bruise marks from our everyday play. We all grew up loving each other and our parents who couldnt watch us 24/7. They had to work to feed us.
It appears from the article that the foster parent system and the caseworkers of social services need to be examined. Power breeds problems and it needs to be throtteled. djw

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