When Will It Stop: More Deaths in Monitored Homes

Maine has become a hotbed for children killed in homes in the past 12 years. These were cases where child welfare officials were previously made aware of where children were subjected to abuse or neglect, sometimes for years. Not only that, but an additional 34 deaths were ruled accidental or of natural causes in the same type of environment. The State of Maine is doing a great disservice to their citizens by not following up on these sorts of issues. We’re Robert and Kathey Raskin, and we’re here to shed light on this gross miscarriage of justice against children in this state.

More About the Fallout

Dr. Stephen Meister claims that “changing behavior and identifying the families that have multiple risk factors, which dramatically increases the likelihood of death, accidental or otherwise. So, death may not be the result of abuse, but can be linked to an increased number of hazards.” He is an Augusta pediatrician and member of the state’s Child Death and Serious Injury Review Panel. In the latest report by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Administration for Children & Families, Maine did not submit data about the deaths of children. This report was from 2017 and would’ve included child fatalities and the rate of fatality per 100,000 children. But nobody knows what’s happening up there.

We Demand Answers

As is the case with most child welfare agencies in America, the Office of Child and Family Services is rotten. There’s high staff turnover at the caseworker level. Workers are responsible for too many cases, far beyond what anyone can manage in a regular office position. There are zero incentives to stay where they’re at which is sad about how things are there.

Furthermore, they’re bogged down by a paperwork system that’s entirely burdensome and needs desperate modernization. The department can’t seem to hang onto administrators either, which has led to a leadership vacuum. It’s a thankless career and an overburdened system that helps no one. We call upon the State of Maine to stand up and do something about it.

News Center Maine tells us that the State is making headway on upgrading their ancient system below.


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