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 reports:
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 system.
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 investigation.
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