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TexProtects Statement on DFPS Child Maltreatment Fatalities Report

TexProtects Statement on DFPS Child Maltreatment Fatalities Report

March 2, 2018
Contact: Lee Nichols
[email protected]

Dallas/Austin, Texas — Today, the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services released its Fiscal Year 2017 Child Maltreatment Fatalities and Near Fatalities Annual Report. Following is a statement from TexProtects CEO Madeline McClure regarding the report’s findings:

“On a positive note, Texas experienced a 22.5% drop in child fatalities in 2017 from 222 to 172, representing reductions from drowning, co-sleeping and physical trauma fatalities. The decrease in deaths correlates with the substantial decline in Child Protective Services caseworker turnover, in large part resulting from the significant salary increase we advocated for in the last and past legislative sessions.

“We hope the drop in child maltreatment fatalities is the beginning of a trend, but Texas cannot pat itself on the back until that number falls to zero. At the very least, we should expect no child abuse fatalities in families that have had an open CPS case. Half of child fatalities involve families that had a history with the CPS system.

“While most victims survive abuse, over 60,000 child abuse cases are substantiated every year in Texas. The resulting trauma impacts survivors for the rest of their lives, imposing terrible costs upon them and society as a whole. These factors speak volumes about the need for effective family support services, such as home visiting programs, that help prevent maltreatment from ever happening, before the need for CPS ever arises.”

Posted on March 2, 2018.