There seems to be an issue within social service departments and how children are handled. While their main focus seems to be first reunite children with their biological parents, kids are slipping through the cracks and are getting hurt and even dying in the process.
In one case in Cook County, a 2 year old was beaten to death by his mother. The mother had a background that included violence, drug use, prostitution and much more. The child was born premature due to the mother use of drugs while she was pregnant. The child was hospitalized shortly after birth because of the effects of the drugs and alcohol. During this hospitalization the doctors called DCFS because of the child’s condition as well as the fact this mother had 5 additional children who had been taken away from her.
After a short investigation, Lutheran Social Services placed the child back with the mother and closed the case. Six months later there was a report made of possible child abuse and that the mother was missing. The caseworker did not follow up and a few months later, and 2 more emergency room visits later, the child was dead from the abuse at his mother’s hands.
In this specific case, the father of the child was begging for custody. Social service agencies and doctors have a duty to report child abuse, and to protect children from further abuse. In this case, their inaction was deemed fault of the death of a child, and a $45 million dollar mistake. Lutheran allegedly did not perform any risk assessment before placing the child back in the home.
This was a unique case involving errors by multiple doctors, agencies and Lutheran. If something like this has happened to your family please call us at 312-346-5320 to see if you have lawsuit.