Thousands of Child Abuse Reports in Arizona Ignored

At Reason, we’ve reported on
any number
of cases where state child-protective service
employees have
abused their authority
to take children away from families. But
in Arizona, officials of their child welfare services have
discovered the opposite: There are thousands of child abuse claims
called into the state that have not been investigated.

The Associated Press

Thousands of cases of suspected child abuse that were reported
to a statewide hotline have gone uninvestigated over the past four
years, putting children across Arizona at risk, state officials
disclosed Thursday.

The cases were misclassified as not requiring investigations
starting in 2009. The number rapidly escalated in the past 20
months as caseloads increased and changes were made to the hotline
team, said Clarence Carter, head of the state’s child welfare

Five thousand of the 6,000 cases that were not investigated
happened in that time, and all will be reviewed, Carter said. At
least 125 cases already have been identified where children
subsequently became the subject of another child abuse

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