DCS Dealt With 31 Deceased Children This Year

The data on 31 children whose lives had at some point intersected with Department of Children’s Services workers before they died this year have been released in response to requests by The Tennessean and by Democratic state lawmaker Sherry Jones.
Jones had made repeated requests over the past two months for the information.
Ten children died in Tennessee during the first six months of 2012 while they were the subjects of ongoing investigations by the Department of Children’s Services. None was more than a year old.
An additional 17 children who died during the same time period had at some point been brought to the attention of DCS. At the time of their deaths, however, their case files had been closed.
And four children ages 18 and younger died in state custody during the same period of time.
…In releasing the data to Jones and the newspaper, DCS attorney Douglas Dimond acknowledged that the state agency charged with protecting children had been violating the law for seven years in its reporting of child deaths.
A 2005 law requires DCS to inform lawmakers of each child death or near-death in their district within 45 days.
“Although the statute was enacted in 2005, it does not appear that the Department has been generating individual notifications to legislators at any time or under any version of the statute since then, but the Department will certainly begin doing so immediately in compliance with the statute,” Dimond wrote.

Leave a Reply