header-left
Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Bookmark and Share
File #: 190779    Version: 0 Name:
Type: Resolution Status: IN COUNCIL - FINAL PASSAGE
File created: 10/3/2019 In control: CITY COUNCIL
On agenda: Final action:
Title: Authorizing the establishment of a "Special Committee on Child Separation In Philadelphia" to investigate child separation in Philadelphia's child welfare system and develop recommendations to ensure compliance with State Child Protective Services Law to protect children and due process rights of families and prevent the unnecessary break-up of families.
Sponsors: Councilmember Oh, Councilmember Bass, Councilmember Quiñones Sánchez, Councilmember Blackwell, Councilmember Johnson, Councilmember O'Neill, Councilmember Squilla
Attachments: 1. Resolution No. 19077900
Title
Authorizing the establishment of a "Special Committee on Child Separation In Philadelphia" to investigate child separation in Philadelphia's child welfare system and develop recommendations to ensure compliance with State Child Protective Services Law to protect children and due process rights of families and prevent the unnecessary break-up of families.
Body
WHEREAS, Separation of children from their families, even for the short-term, results in emotional and physical harm and toxic stress, disrupting a child's brain architecture and affecting health with long-term consequences for the child, the family, and the community; and

WHEREAS, The issue of child separation from families arises in the context of municipal child welfare systems; and

WHEREAS, Pennsylvania, like every jurisdiction, requires child separation only when it's absolutely necessary; and

WHEREAS, There are situations where it is absolutely necessary to separate children from their families; and

WHEREAS, Philadelphia unfortunately has the highest poverty rate of any large city in the country, and the highest child separation rate in the country-three times that of New York City and four times that of Chicago; and

WHEREAS, There is no evidence that Philadelphians are more likely than any other person in the country to abuse their children; and

WHEREAS, The 2017 edition of the National Association of Counsel for Children Redbook-a legal guide for child welfare attorneys-contains this statement from Marvin Ventrell, a former NACC executive director: "Our zeal to protect children, to be the 'child savers' once again, and perhaps our failure to value 'adequate parenting' over removal, taught us one of our biggest lessons. Our efforts can and sometimes do harm children"; and

WHEREAS, The overwhelming majority of families that are monitored and disrupted by child welfare authorities are poor and disproportionately minorities; and

WHEREAS, Poor families, and poor families of color in parti...

Click here for full text