A Stolen Gen 6: Creating legal orphans


 Part 6

 Dr. Christine A. Cole ©

Creating legal orphans

The NSW government is intent on imposing a regime of punishment on disadvantaged families.  The end result will be to make legal orphans of thousands of children who would have been far better off left with their parents.  The media has focussed on a small number of extreme abuse cases to define the problem and any proposed solutions.  The real ties that exist between parents and children, even after removal are ignored.  The impact on the most disadvantaged such as Aboriginal communities and/or single mothers with or who had, mental health problems are ignored.

Since Goward wants to impose the US model of out-of home-care on Australian families then it may be worthwhile to look at the outcomes of their system. The American child welfare policy swings from keeping troubled families together to tearing them apart both supposedly for the child’s protection.  The problem is that family preservation and child safety are treated as two opposing ends of a spectrum.  These shifts are not based on any real changes in rates of child maltreatment,[1] but have more to do with political expediencies and the power of lobby groups to influence those expediencies.[2]  In the US there has been the push to move children out of foster care and into adoptive homes since President Clinton introduced the Adoption and Safe Families Act  (ASFA) in 1997.  The focus thereby shifted from supporting vulnerable families to forcibly removing their children.  It also was in direct conflict with previous legislation implemented to protect native peoples from having their children unnecessarily removed and placed with non-native families. Therefore rather than increase stability for families it destabilised communities. The increase in termination of parental rights did not keep pace with finding adoptive homes consequently there has emerged a cohort of ‘legal orphans’ – children legally severed from their parents without any home to go.  The expansion of the foster care and adoption industries in the late 1990s is now reaping what it has sown with a concurrent increase of failed adoptions. The increase in subsidies provided to adoptive families under ASFA was the financial carrot to lure more families into taking children from the foster care system.  These subsidies though, only last until the youth is 18.  Financially rewarding individuals or organisations for adopting children has proven a failed social experiment.  The government claimed it would save money by alleviating ‘foster care’ drift. This has not worked.  Instead the increased economic and social costs are now being felt.  The number of homeless youths has increased exponentially and youth removed under ASFA who did not get adopted age out of the foster care system.  Consequently there are a growing number of homeless youths entering the local shelter system.[3]

The other reform that has had catastrophic results for families incurred by the US program to get “tough on child abuse” was the focus on unborn children.  According to Ian Vandewalker, of the Centre for Reproductive Rights, this is creating “yet another category of legal orphans”.   He explains that babies are being permanently separated for something the mother did before the child is born.  Usually it is the use of illegal drugs while pregnant.  The policy is to punish the mother for being ‘bad’.  He states:

This presumption in favour of termination is fundamentally ill conceived.  Termination of parental rights is a drastic and unwise response to the public health problems caused by illegal drug use: drug use or addiction does not, ipso facto, make someone unfit to care for a child –   making drug use itself a ground for breaking up a family is unnecessary. Given that it also has various negative effects, including trammelling the constitutional rights of mothers and creates legal orphans, the policy should be abandoned.[4]

Removing the babies of disadvantaged women not only dehumanises them, but reduces their status to one of a womb breeder for others more deserving.  It is a discriminatory policy that obliterates a woman’s human and civil rights.[5] It in effect is rolling back women’s reproductive rights to some where mid last century.  Professor Ainsworth poses some pertinent questions: “How can it be ethical to knowingly allow a mother to carry a baby to full term when the child care and protection authority know all along they will remove the child at birth? … Is it ethical for the State to knowingly create circumstances under which parents will be subject to the pain of loss and grief for the child they together created and bore”?[6]

The US Care Industry

In parts of the US where the foster care system was privatised the number of children taken, many swept up in midnight raids without warrants, doubled whilst the number of available foster homes shrunk, even with extensive advertising campaigns for carers.  Most of the removals were NOT FOR ABUSE but removed because they were determined to be “at risk” of abuse or neglect at some point in the future. The pattern is the same. Richard Wexler explains there are 3 stages:

  1. There is a death of a child known to the system
  2.  A crack down on child abuse which becomes ‘foster care panic’ where caseworkers apprehensive about making mistakes set about removing a greater number of children.
  3. Bureaucrats duck for cover, finding some way to blame the death on efforts to keep families together – such as blaming lax laws that require them to keep children in or return them to dangerous situations.[7]

Hence between 1995 and 1997 the number of children taken from their parents and placed in foster care in New York City increased 52%. The hardest hit were the most disadvantaged.  85% of the children were taken because of poverty.

For the most trivial reasons families are destroyed. If the furniture is broken down or the house is messy, CWA workers will remove the child. When in doubt, the safest practice for the workers is to remove the children and then to file neglect charges that never have to be proved in court.[8]

Psychologist Seth Farber states: “Only a small minority of these children had been separated from parents who are dangerous to them”. The reason for the removals was supposedly fuelled by new reporting laws and increased funding for social services much of which was used for child removal into foster care.[9]


The Nebraska’s Platte Institute spoke out strongly against privatising the foster care industry and using financial incentives to drive it:

The current system creates an incentive to shuffle a child into foster care, not because it is the best option for the child, but because in many cases funding is sure to follow.  On the other hand, alternatives that actually cost less and are more effective are not taken into serious consideration.[10]

An editorial stated: “The Department of Health and Human Services sought to streamline government and save costs through contracting with private agencies to take over foster care services, but the public/private partnership was a complete failure with some contractors unable to pay foster carers and others going bankrupt”.[11]

A Kansas Joint Committed on Children’s Issues describes the many dire problems with privatised child welfare. They found that the NGOs:

  • Do not place children with kin even if the child has an ongoing relationship with a grandparent
  • Submit subjective court reports parents and family of the child are not allowed to see
  • Do not return children when parents have completed reintegration plans
  • Don’t provide enough contact between children and parents due to their visitation policies
  • The state makes more money when children are adopted by a non-relative
  • Case managers, caseworkers and others personnel not trained properly
  • NGO contractors make questionable decisions regarding children’s care and placement
  • Children’s behaviour grows worse in foster care placement
  • Children seriously abused during foster care placement
  • No transparency and accountability – so mistakes by contractors are easily covered up
  • Grandparents needing thousands of dollars to rescue their grandchildren from unsuitable foster carers
  • Women who suffer domestic violence are further victimised by having their children removed
  • Inadequate background checks done on foster carers[12]
  • Placing children in unsafe foster homes
  • Falsification of court petitions, falsification of child abuse investigative records and failure of staff to notify the client of required child support payments, conflict of interest, abuse of position, misconduct, fraud and other irregularities in processing economic aid for clients
  • Children received worse care under privatisation.[13]

Another problem identified in foster care is that many children were being given mood altering drugs without parental consent. One such case resulted in a 7 year old boy committing suicide.[14] “This is the social experiment called privatisation – an experiment gone awry.  A system that today rewards private service providers for the failures that have historically been relegated to the states”.[15]

It is not only the foster care system that is riddled with problems.  Children taken from foster care and placed for adoption have been murdered by their adopters:

If you’re having problems, they’ll take your kids anytime they want,” said Robert Wabash, of the Sioux Nation, whose granddaughter and grandniece both died after being adopted … They are among countless children who have been rescued to their deaths by authorities entrusted with their protection .. Adoption can be every bit as deadly as foster care.[16]

A mother commits suicide because she loses her parental rights. Children are bashed, starved, suffocated, burned and belted to death[17] by people who adopted them to supposedly give them a ‘Forever Home’. Caseworkers do not properly screen potential adopters, falsify reports, and try and reunify children with adoptive parents that abused them.[18]

A number of adoptive parents continued to collect adoption subsidies after the child they adopted died.  Many of these children had disabilities therefore some of the payments were as high as $1,700 per month.[19]  The Department of Health was working on devising a system for cross-referencing its 45,000 adoption cases with death records. Another couple defrauded two children they adopted out of their inheritance.[20]   Adoptions fail with children being put back into the system more damaged than ever.[21]  The expansion of adoption has had horrific outcomes for children.  In the latest expose of abuse it was found that adoptive parents who had adopted from the domestic foster system and from overseas were advertising children on the net for ‘re-homing’.   Re-homing is an American term for finding a new home for a pet the person no longer wants.[22] Unfortunately the American headlines regularly feature stories of abused adoptees, the internet if full of adoptees discussing the abusive homes they came from, but when researchers try and uncover the level of abuse in the system they are thwarted by being told the information has to be kept sealed for privacy reasons.

One study however was conducted.[23] Because of changes in the data collection in the state of Missouri to better recognize fatal maltreatment of children in 1991 the state mandated the Missouri Child Fatality Review Panel (CFRP) system to ensure that child deaths were comprehensively reviewed and that standardized data was collected.  Standard items included household composition, people living in the decedent child’s household at the time of death and their relationships to the child.  Hence the CFRP data was uniquely suited for analytical purposes to evaluate risk factors for fatal maltreatment.   It found that children residing in households with adults unrelated to them were 8 times more likely to die of maltreatment than children in households with 2 biological parents.  Risk of maltreatment death was elevated  for children residing with step, foster, or adoptive parents.[24]   It found children living in households with 1 or more male adults that are not related to them were the variables that significantly increased risk, and that included unrelated males living in a household comprised of a biological couple and their children.  This risk is not elevated for children living with a single biological parent.  The researchers criticised research from the Third National Incidence Study  of Child Abuse and Neglect that reported that children living with single parents had 77%  risk of physical abuse and neglect compared with children living with 2 parents.  The researchers state:

Our findings suggest that the National Incidence Study findings reflect the increased risk among single-parent households in which an unrelated adult male also resides … This research gives important direction in child protection work.

Hence the  2 key risk factors identified in the study were living with:

1. A male

2. Who is non- related.[25]

This is concerning when more than half of adoptions in the US are stepparent adoptions, usually by the non-related father.[26]

Since a single mother poses less risk to a child than 2 biological parents it begs the question why are single mothers being targeted for removal of their child/ren?[27] Particularly as the targeting is justified on the basis of old research that did not control for the variable – contact with an unrelated male?

Not implementing supportive services for families has had huge economic costs in the US.

It was noted that Foster care is a service that is part of a larger set of interventions that cost society substantial amounts of money because family support and child abuse prevention programs have not been funded and implemented.  In 1999 the Urban Institute reported that child welfare costs totalled $14.4 billion.  In the fiscal year 2000 states may have spent as much as $20 billion on child welfare services with $9.9 billion coming from federal funds, $7.9 billion from state sources and $2.2 billion from local governments. In 2002 the Federal Government spent $13.1 billion for programs within the Administration for Children and Families, which did not include state-only funded programs. [28]



Australian Care Industry

Another matter for deep concern is the training or lack of it by those entrusted to interact with disadvantaged families. For example child protection workers who make decisions that will effect a child and its family for life have been described by NSW Family and Community Services Minister, Pru Goward, as often abusing their powers, being inexperienced and immature and failing to empathise because they are too young and/or never had children themselves.[29] And it must be added have no understanding of the complex trauma and the lifelong mental health problems they are inflicting on the baby/child they may be unnecessarily removing or on its parents.  That information is not part of their curriculum.

Many of the same problems that plague the US out-of-home care industry are evident in Australia. In a Report published in 2013, after a 2 year Inquiry into Queensland’s Child Protection System, Commissioner Carmody stated the system had  failed its children and their families.[30]  Carmody found that there were systemic failures in the state’s child protection system, insufficient resources spent on early intervention and an unsustainable increase in the number of children in State care.  According to Professor Dorothy Scott the Australian and North American child protection systems “are in a state of crisis. Their reactive and bureaucratic systems are overwhelmed with escalating cases which  deliver  little in the way of effective prevention or intervention”.  She goes on to state that with a doubling of child protection notifications less than a quarter of the notifications were substantiated. Resources were being used carrying out futile investigations which allowed children who were in real need to slip through the cracks.[31]

The NSW Child Protection System also stands accused of failing the families and children it is supposed to protect and support.  A Supreme Court judge blasted DoCs staff for misusing their powers, falsifying evidence and removing two children when there was no evidence of child abuse.[32]  The mother believed she had fallen foul of DoCS workers because they had taken a personal dislike to her.[33] A Psychiatrist stated that often mental health problems are fabricated, embellished and often unsubstantiated by DoCs workers leading to children being taken unnecessarily and families having to go to court to get them back.[34] When Goward was told of these abuses during an ABC radio interview she agreed and stated she was also aware of the abuse of power by DoCs workers. Apparently many parents had lodged complaints with her as after they had requested and received respite care from the Department their children were never returned.  According to Goward  DoCS were often overly cautious particularly if there had been bad publicity about a death in a family that was known to them: “I think they have become very careful and the safest way to protect children, they think, is to remove them.  Whereas we all know that there is quite a lot of long-term damage associated with that, and certainly the non-government section is very worried about it.  So am I.  I mean the opposition has already pledged to reduce the number of children in out-of-home care in our first term”.[35]  Evidently Goward, prior to her party’s election to State government, was aware of the many problems in the out-of-home care system and the solutions.  Similar problems and solutions were identified in two Inquires into child protection in South Australia and Queensland.

The Select Committee on Families advised the South Australian Government that the culture within SA Child Protection was “rotten”.  The Committee was scathing in its findings.   Goward’s claims that an ineffective and abusive system existed within NSW child protection equally applied to its counterpart in South Australia.  The Select Committee found that “immature, inexperienced, badly trained” workers were “vindictive and abused their powers with impunity”. They were totally inept at protecting children or engaging with their families. There was no attempt to assist families stay intact. When grandparents offered to provide kinship care for grandchildren with whom they had a connection, care workers not only ignored them, but were obstructive. As was the case in NSW families who applied for respite care or support services had their children removed.  Families SA policies for family preservation and reunification were ignored.   They covered their mistakes by falsifying files and failed to reunify families that had their children unnecessarily removed.  In other occasions they did not remove children who were in danger.[36]  Since 1997 SA Child Protection has worked in partnership with NGOs such as Anglicare SA, Aboriginal Family Support Services, Anglicare Community Care, Port Pirie Central Mission/Centcare Whyalla. All of which are collectively known as ACSPs.  When children require alternative care the Department refers them to the Central Alternative Care Unit (CACU) which liaises with the ACSPs to obtain appropriate child placement. They were also supposed to assist families whose children were in care. The ACSPs are also responsible for recruiting, assessing and training carers.  The Committee stated that the SA out-of-home care is in crisis, failed in its duty of care to protect vulnerable families and instead caused them harm. Further that it has failed a key initiative to preserve and reunify families. Considering its partnership then obviously the ACSPs are as culpable as SA Child Protection.   Considering the partnership between NGOs and NSW Department of Community Services that Goward is at present expanding, one cannot be blamed for fearing that this is the future that awaits NSW families.

The Queensland Child Protection Commission of Inquiry found that the Department, even after two previous inquiries into its child protection system, one of note being in relation to abuse in foster care, still did not ensure the safety, wellbeing and best interests of children. It concluded that the system focused on coercive strategies of removal rather than supporting families to stay together and that too little money was spent on early intervention to support vulnerable families. Of a budget of $2.6 billion only $90 million was allocated to preventive or supportive services. This resulted in intake of children into foster care growing 185% from – 40, 202 in 2002-2003 to 114,503 in 2011-2012.[37]

Commissioner Carmody stated the:

The symbiotic link between supporting families and having fewer children in the system is irrefutable and has been ignored and underestimated by government for too long. I am also firmly of the view that better rehabilitative and therapeutic family support for parents under stress – especially Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities plagued with chronic neglect – is the key to stronger Queensland families AND SAFER CHILDREN. It may seem simplistic to say ‘prevention is better than cure’, but it is an undoubted reality that without preventive strategies the cycle of intergenerational abuse will continue to infect successive generations.  There is little point in tearing a family apart just to try to put it back together.  To children, a loved parent is much more than the worst thing the parent has ever done them: most children are better off being cared for haphazardly by a loved parent than in some else’s family or a state-run facility … The risk-averse ‘better safe than sorry’ culture that has sprung up over the last 10 years has been only too evident during this inquiry.  This overly timorous attitude pervades child protection decision making at all levels of government and across the entire system.  It is  the root cause of over-reporting, resource wastage and an overcrowded out-of-home care system struggling to provide safe and stable placements for children with multiple and complex needs who could, with proper support, be cared for safely at home by a still-loved parent.  The best way for government to help children is to support their parents and communities.[38]

According to Commissioner Carmody not to act now will mean that the system will become even more ineffective with an increase of 40 percent of children entering the system in the next decade. He suggests redirecting more of the Departmental budget of $2.6 billion into family support services.  If  family preservation methods are implemented he projects rather than the welfare budget blowing out in the next decade the number of children in the statutory system will have fallen by more that 25%.  Hence the implementation of the reforms will have recovered the new money in the first five years, plus be better off by $578 million in the next five.[39]

Significantly he stated:

Child protection is about more than economics. It is an ethical imperative. The cost of repair may not be cheap — but the cost of doing nothing would be much more, measured both in dollars and human suffering … failure to learn the lessons of history will guarantee that they are repeated. It is time for us to break the cycle of intergenerational abuse by addressing the drivers of abuse and refocusing our attention on parents and families. The new child protection system must be one that encourages and enables everyone to take responsibility for protecting children.[40]

[1] Dorothy Roberts, Professor of Law, Excerpts from Shattered Bonds: The Color of Child Welfare (2002) New York: Basic Civitas Books cited  on Frontline, ‘An Assault on Family Preservation, 7 December 2013 http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/fostercare/inside/roberts.html

[2] Baker, A. (2012, Nov 30). ‘Making people worse off’, Centre for Independent Studies , http://www.cis.org.au/publications/ideasthecentre/article/4628-making-people-worse-off ; Sammut, J. ‘Apologise but allow adoption’, (2013, Mar 19). The Australian, http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/opinion/apologise-but-allow-adoption/story-e6frgd0x-1226600097562 ; Morton, R. (2013, Mar 19). ‘Apology for Forced Adoptions risky’, http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/apology-for-forced-adoptions-risky/story-fn59niix-1226600147134  –  The Centre for Independent Studies based at St. Leonards is a right wing think tank that has an agenda of cutting or removing all welfare. It is aligned with neo-liberals in the US.  It has come out strongly against family preservation attacking individuals who want to keep families intact as child abusers.  Jeremy Sammut from the CIS states “Family preservation profoundly harms children”. He accuses single mothers who receive benefits has creating a “an underclass”  that are significantly over represented in child abuse cases. Elements of the Australian Government that belong to the secretive Lyons Forum, a right wing radical anti-abortion, Christian group,  have links with the CIS. See Kate Murphy, Marian Quartly, Denise Cuthbert, (2009). ‘In the Best Interests of the Child” Mapping the (Re) Emergence of Pro-Adoption Politics in Contemporary Australia, Australian Journal of  Politics & History, 55(2), pp. 201-218, June.

[3] Ibid ; Foster Care, Child Welfare Reform in Review. (2012). ‘The Legal Orphans’, January 1, http://liftingtheveil.blog.com/2012/01/01/foster-care-child-welfare-reform-in-review/

[4] Vandewalker, I.  (2008).‘Taking the Baby Before it’s Born: Termination of the Parental Rights of Women Who Use Illegal Drugs while Pregnant’, N.Y.U. Review of Law & Social Change, 32, pp. 423-463, at p. 423

[5] Ehrlich, J. (2008). ‘Breaking the Law by Giving Birth: The War on Drugs, The War on Reproductive Rights, and the War on Women’, N.Y.U. Review of Law & Social Change, 32, pp. 381-   421

[6] Ainsworth, F. & Hansen, P. (2009). ‘Babies for the Deserving: Developments in Foster Care and Adoption in one Australian State – Others to Follow?’, Just Policy, 50, pp. 24-29 at p. 29

[7] Thomas, E. (1998).  ‘If You Lived Here, You’d Be Home Now: The Business of Foster Care. IPT Forensics Journal, 10, http://www.ipt-forensics.com/journal/volume10/j10_10.htm

[8] Thomas, E. (1998).  ‘If You Lived Here, You’d Be Home Now: The Business of Foster Care. IPT Forensics Journal, 10, Thomas, E. (1998).  ‘If You Lived Here, You’d Be Home Now: The Business of Foster Care. IPT Forensics Journal, 10

[9] Pelton, L. (1990) cited in Thomas, E. (1998).  ‘If You Lived Here, You’d Be Home Now: The Business of Foster Care. IPT Forensics Journal, 10, Thomas, E. (1998).  ‘If You Lived Here, You’d Be Home Now: The Business of Foster Care. IPT Forensics Journal, 10,

[10] Advocates Weigh In on Nebraska’s Foster Care Privatization Efforts. (2010, Oct 23). http://liftingtheveil.blog.com/2010/10/23/advocates-weigh-in-on-nebraskas-foster-care-privatization/

[12] The problem was not isolated to Kansas – Corkery, M. (2004, Nov 14). ‘Child’s death prompts review of DCYF actions’, http://nicholasalahverdian.com/story12

[13] Report of the Joint Committee on Children’s Issues to the 2010 Kansas Legislature  http://www.scribd.com/doc/31778123/Report-of-the-Joint-Committee-on-Children%E2%80%99s-Issues-to-the-2010-Kansas-Legislature

[14] In one such case a 7 year old boy on mood altering drugs was told his mother no longer had visitation rights so he killed himself –  Hundley, K. (2009, May 8). ‘Suicide of foster child, 7, prompts review of DCF drug policy’, Tampa Bay Times, http://www.tampabay.com/news/publicsafety/suicide-of-foster-child-7-prompts-review-of-dcf-drug-policy/999504

[15] O’Hanlon, K. (2009). ‘Privatization fails: Nebraska tries again to reform child welfare: In 2009, Nebraska privatized its child welfare, now critics say it hasn’t worked’, The Centre for Public Integrity, http://www.publicintegrity.org/2012/08/21/10706/privatization-fails-nebraska-tries-again-reform-child-welfare ; Glynn, E. (2009, Dec 1). Parents, grandparents ask why children removed from homes’, Kansas Watchdog.org, http://watchdog.org/36496/ks-parents-grandparents-ask-why-children-removed-from-homes/  ; WHSV.com (2012, Mar 23). ‘Toddler’s Death in Foster Care Prompts Review of Agency’, http://www.whsv.com/news/headlines/143987336.html ; Hundley, K. (2009, May 8). ‘Suicide of foster child, 7, prompts review of DCF drug policy’, Tampa Bay Times, http://www.tampabay.com/news/publicsafety/suicide-of-foster-child-7-prompts-review-of-dcf-drug-policy/999504 ;

[16] Rewarding States for Adoptions Part of the Problem, Rather Than a Solution (2010, Nov 6). http://liftingtheveil.blog.com/2010/11/06/rewarding-states-for-adoptions-part-of-the-problem-rather-than-a-solution/  ; Wodard, S. (2010, Oct 12). Iowa Commission Takes on Child-Welfare Morass’, HuffingtonPost  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/stephanie-woodard/iowa-commission-takes-on_b_758384.html

[17] Barth, R. Hodorowicz, M. *2011). ‘Foster and Adopted Children Who Die From Filicide: What Can We Learn and What Can We Do’? Adoption Quarterly,  14(2), pp. 84-106: .Pierce, J. (2010, Aug 11). ‘Adoptive Mother, Boyfriend Not Charged with Murder in OKC Child’s Death’, Oklahoma’s Own. http://www.newson6.com/global/story.asp?s=12955540

[18] Rewarding States for Adoptions Part of the Problem, Rather Than a Solution (2010, Nov 6). http://liftingtheveil.blog.com/2010/11/06/rewarding-states-for-adoptions-part-of-the-problem-rather-than-a-solution/

[19]New York Post. (2010, Aug 9). Foster ghouls’ $$ for dead kids’, http://nypost.com/2010/08/19/foster-ghouls-for-dead-kids/

[20] McKinnon, J. (2010). ‘Adoptive parents accused of stealing inheritance’, Pittsburgh Post Gazette, http://www.post-gazette.com/neighborhoods-east/2010/10/23/Adoptive-parents-accused-of-stealing-inheritance/stories/201010230108

[21] Van Berkel, (2010, June 2). ‘Former foster parents in Lane County charged with abusing their adopted son’, http://www.oregonlive.com/politics/index.ssf/2010/06/lane_county_couple_charged_wit.html ; Grant, L. Trevor. (1996). The Politicization of Foster Care in New York. New York: Yacos Publication; Golden,  R. (1996). Disposable Children: America’s Child Welfare System, Chicago: Wadsworth Publishing;

[22] Twohey, M. (2013, Sep 9). ‘The Child Exchange: Inside America’s underground market for adopted children’, Reuters, http://www.reuters.com/investigates/adoption/#article/part1Kristof, N. (2013, Nov 20).  ‘When children are traded: A few ads offering free children on  the Internet’, New York Timeshttp://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/21/opinion/kristof-when-children-are-traded.html

[23] Stiffman, M. N. Schnitzer, P., Adam, P., Kruse, R. & Ewigman, B. (2002). ‘Household Composition and Risk of Fatal Child Maltreatment’, Paediatrics, 109(4), pp. 615-621.

[24] Ibid, p.615.

[25] Ibid, pp. 619-620.

[26] Appell, A & Boyer, B. (1995). Parental Rights vs Best Interests of the Child: A False Dichotomy in the Context of Adoption, Duke Journal of Gender Law & Policy, 2(63), pp. 63-88, at p. 63

[27] Berger, L. (2009). ‘Mothers, Men, and Child Protective Services Involvement’, Child Maltreatment, 14(3), pp. 263-276.

[28] Pecora, P. Williams, J. Kessler, R. Downs, C., O’Brien, K,  Hiripi, E. & Morello, S. (2003). Accessing the Effects of Foster Care: Early Results from the Casey national Alumni Study’, The Foster Care Alumni Studies,  http://www.casey.org/Resources/Publications/pdf/CaseyNationalAlumniStudy_FullReport.pdf

At p. 7

[29] Hagar Cohen, ‘ Babies At Risk’, ABC RN, Background Briefinghttp://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/backgroundbriefing/babies-at-risk/3117268#transcript ;

[30] Carmody, T. (2013). Queensland Child Protection Commission of Inquiry: Taking Responsibility: A Roadmap for Queensland Child Protection, Queensland: Queensland Child Protection Commission of Inquiry http://www.childprotectioninquiry.qld.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0009/175248/QCPCI_Discussion_paper.pdf

[31] Scott, D. (2002).  ‘A promise unfulfilled on child abuse’, Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health, 26(5),  pp. 415-416.

[32] Arlington, K. (2008).  DOCS took kids by force Daily Telegraph,  Dec 26, p. 11

[33] Hagar Cohen, ‘ Babies At Risk’, ABC RN, Background Briefinghttp://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/backgroundbriefing/babies-at-risk/3117268#transcript

[34] ibid

[36] Legislative Council of South Australia, Select Committee on Families SA. (2009, Nov). Report of the Select Committee on Families SA, Presented to the Third Session, Fifty-First Parliament 2008-2009, http://www.bressington.net/Files/FamiliesSAReport.pdf

[37] Carmody, T. (2013). Queensland Child Protection Commission of Inquiry: Taking Responsibility: A Roadmap for Queensland Child Protection, Queensland: Queensland Child Protection Commission of Inquiry http://www.childprotectioninquiry.qld.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0009/175248/QCPCI_Discussion_paper.pdf at p. xii

[38] Ibid p.  xii

[39] Ibid xv

[40] Ibid p. xv


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