Thursday, November 26, 2020 11:00 pm

Why does Arizona send children back to homes with drug-addicted parents? Kaine Fisher, senior partner/director of Rose Law Group Family Law speaks to the growing problem

By Darcy Olsen and Rebecca Masterson, opinion contributors

The Arizona Republic

America is in the midst of a drug epidemic. At Gen Justice, a 501(c)(3) charity dedicated to mending the broken child protection system, we spend a lot of time researching this crisis from a specific angle – the effect meth and opioids are having on children and infants.

What we’ve learned may not surprise you:

Children of the drug crisis are not making it out alive.

More and more children are living in dangerous and live-threatening conditions. The number of infants and children dying from maltreatment is at an all-time high – and most experts report that these statistics only scratch the surface of the real problem.

READ ON:

The constitutionally based goal of family reunification is an important one, however, I don’t think sending children home from the hospital with drug-addicted parents is what the Framers had in mind. A positive drug test from a baby means only one thing:  The parent was using drugs while pregnant. The parent obviously has a problem and needs help. But allowing the child to remain in their care while they get the help they need seems a bit irresponsible. There exists a clear and imminent threat to the health, safety and welfare of the child. The only way this threat can be completely mitigated is for there to be around-the-clock supervision of parent-child contact after returning home from the hospital until the parent can establish a long track record of sobriety.  The government will never foot that bill, so there is a real risk of harm to the child in the event of relapse.  

~ Kaine R. Fisher

 

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