Senator Martins Backs Measure to Protect Children in Protective Cases

April 05, 2011

Senator Jack M. Martins is backing an effort to ensure that abused children in protective custody are truly being protected. In a press conference in Albany, Senator Martins and Senator Martin Golden (R-C-I, Brooklyn) announced they are introducing legislation to require child protective caseworkers to take a photograph when they make a visit to a child in the child protective services (CPS) system for abuse and neglect.

“This proposed bill saves lives, period. This will bring accountability. It’s our responsibility to protect those who are least able to protect themselves. Let’s protect our children first,” Senator Martins said.

“People are sick over reading recent news reports about a caseworker who falsified home visits,” Senator Golden said. “This appalling behavior leaves children open to even more violence and abuse. While the vast majority of caseworkers tackle their difficult jobs with pride and dignity each day, the bad apples are allowing our children to die.”

Under Martins’ and Golden’s proposal, the photo of the child must be taken and entered into the case record along with the caseworker’s notes and findings for that visit. Florida implemented a similar system recently after more than 70 Florida child welfare workers were caught lying about their home visits.