Coakley Defends DCF Despite Hundreds Missing

BOSTON -- Despite yesterday's report that DCF Commissioner Olga Roche is missing "hundreds of kids" under her care, Attorney General Martha Coakley continues to wage an "aggressive," "prolonged war" against child advocates attempting to reform the broken agency.

"As a mother I find it deeply troubling that Martha Coakley will not stop her protracted war on child advocates as they attempt to reform the clearly broken Department of Children and Families," said Kirsten Hughes, MassGOP chairman. "The only thing more disappointing than her repeated and over the top moves to block reform within DCF is her continued support of the commissioner after reports now show hundreds of children are missing."


DCF Admitted to losing "hundreds of kids" despite earlier assurances that every child was accounted for. "On any given day, as many as hundreds of children in Massachusetts’ welfare system are missing, including 134 foster children as young as 13 whom the state listed as “on the run” as of Feb. 2. Social workers stopped checking on another 13 children recently because their parents were uncooperative, rebuffing caseworkers or moving without leaving a forwarding address. (Todd Wollack, "Hundreds of kids may be missing in state welfare system," The Boston Globe, 2/27/14)

Martha Coakley was one of the few Attorneys General who “aggressively” sought to silence child advocates as they sought DCF reforms. "Children's Rights says that Coakley and the Patrick administration were particularly aggressive in trying to repel the changes that the children's advocacy group is seeking, which the group says would address the sort of breakdowns in the Oliver case." (Frank Phillips, "Martha Coakley offers conflicting words on DCF," The Boston Globe, 1/31/14)

Coakley waged a “prolonged battle" against children's advocates who argue the state was failing to protect children. “Children’s Rights has filed at least 20 similar lawsuits against child welfare agencies across the country and has settled at least 15. Coakley and the governor are among the few who have chosen to wage a prolonged battle.” (Frank Phillips, "Martha Coakley offers conflicting words on DCF," The Boston Globe, 1/31/14)

Martha Coakley took the extraordinary step of meddling in Texas courts to stop “top to bottom reforms” of DCF. “Coakley argued the court should throw out the lawsuit’s class-action status in Texas because it could spur burdensome “top-to-bottom” reviews. The suit was filed on behalf of foster kids.” (Matt Stout, “AG Martha Coakley opposed child welfare reform,” Boston Herald, 2/20/14)

Coakley Stands By DCF Commissioner Olga Roche. "Attorney General Martha Coakley is defending Gov. Deval Patrick’s decision not to fire the head of the state’s embattled Department of Children and Families, following the disappearance of a 5-year-old boy now feared dead." (Steve LeBlanc, "Mass. AG Coakley backs Patrick's handing of DCF," AP, 2/11/14)

Coakley Claimed DCF Commissioner Roche was doing a good job. "Commissioner Roche Has Done A Good Job" (My Fox Boston, 2:45 mark, 1/7/14)