Florida's Children First

Op-Ed by Adv. Bd. member John Walsh: Children need real legal protection in court

“Remember, I love you always.” Isn’t that what we all want our children to know? If you were never going to see your child again and could only say one more thing to them, wouldn’t that be it?Those words form the letters of the name of a little girl whom none of us will probably ever see again — Rilya Wilson. The woman with whom the state Department of Children &Families placed her is on trial for her murder right now. Someday, the adoptive parents accused of murdering Nubia Barahona, whose body was found in a plastic garbage bag in the back of a pickup truck, will stand trial, too, as did the murderers of Kayla McKean and A.J. Schwartz before them.You know who won’t stand trial? The state of Florida. Even though our state leads the nation in the rate of child-abuse deaths for the years 2001 to 2010. Even though between 2005 and 2011, 41 percent of all children who died as a result of abuse or neglect had a prior abuse report with DCF, compared to the national average of 12 percent.

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Florida's Children First

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