State ranks near bottom in child welfare

Massachusetts State House boston
The Department of Children and Families has been under scrutiny following the case of Jeremiah Oliver.
Credit: Nicolaus Czarnecki/Metro

Amid the investigation into the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families, additional data shows the state ranks near the bottom in certain child welfare measurements.

Massachusetts ranked 38th in the U.S. in the percent of foster children visited by caseworkers each month, according to the Globe. The 2012 data comes from the federal Department of Health and Human Services and is the most recent available.

It’s more bad news for the embattled DCF, which has been the subject of criticism and scrutiny in recent months after 5-year-old Jeremiah Oliver was reported missing in December. The Fitchburg child was under the oversight of DCF.

Additionally, Massachusetts ranked 45th in the category of children not mistreated again within six months.

State officials told the Globe that different states sometimes use different standards to compile the data and that every state has its own regulations and rules. They also said that Massachusetts requires less proof than most other states to substantiate a report of abuse or neglect, leading to the mistreated children ranking.

Last month, a report by the state’s Office of the Child Advocate said that excessive caseloads at DCF were no excuse for losing track of Oliver, and that DCF workers missed nearly 20 percent of home visits. After the report came out, Gov. Deval Patrick said the Oliver case was a tragedy, but also a chance to “rethink and reinvigorate” DCF.

Follow Michael Naughton on Twitter @metrobosmike.


Winning $7 million New York lottery ticket sold…

The only $7 million winning New York Lottery ticket for Monday's Cash4Life drawing was sold at a Queens 7-Eleven, officials said on Tuesday.


Brooklyn man charged in roommate's stabbing death

A Brooklyn man accused of violently stabbing his roommate to death on Monday is in police custody and faces murder charges.


Dinosaurs could have survived asteroid strike

It turns out there is a good and a bad time for the planet to be hit by a meteor, and dinosaurs were just unlucky.…


OkCupid admits to Facebook-style experimenting on customers

By Sarah McBrideSAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - OkCupid, a top U.S. matchmaking website, intentionally mismatched users to test its technology, the IAC/InterActive Corp service said on…


Playing the Field: Valentine's Day coupling edition

  It’s Valentine’s Day, a day created by Hallmark to make couples spend loads and loads of money on candy, flowers and gourmet dinners. Or…


Incubus singer Brandon Boyd on his newest act,…

The rocker is releasing two new passion projects.


Interview: Brendan Gleeson on the way 'Calvary' depicts…

Brendan Gleeson talks about how his new film "Calvary" began over drinks and how his character here is the opposite of the lead in "The Guard."


'Get on Up' producer Mick Jagger on the…

Mick Jagger, a producer on the James Brown biopic "Get on Up," talks about the time had to tell the singer some bad news and his favorite JB record.


Playing the Field: Valentine's Day coupling edition

  It’s Valentine’s Day, a day created by Hallmark to make couples spend loads and loads of money on candy, flowers and gourmet dinners. Or…


Angelo Cataldi: Ryan Howard deserves better from Phillies

Just last week, Ryan Howard endured the embarrassment of a benching that was inevitable, and yet still shocking.


Larry Donnell has inside track in Giants tight…

Little-known Larry Donnell of Grambling State currently has the inside track, as the second-year player has received the bulk of the first-team reps.


Computer to Jets: Start Michael Vick over Geno…

Jets general manager John Idzik says the choice of who starts between second-year quarterback Geno Smith and veteran Michael Vick will be a “Jets decision.”


What do you wear to a career fair?…

Getting that gig starts with presenting the most polished and memorable version of yourself, so refer to our expert fashion advice.


Editors pick: Margiela's finger armor ring

These cool rings from Maison Martin Margiela are designed to overlap over the finger, covering each joint like armor.


Givenchy champions diversity

Riccardo Tisci's uses a variety of ethnically diverse ladies for his spring campaign including Erykah Badu.


Don't settle for the hotel fitness center with…

Travelers who want to skip the hotel fitness center in favor of local gyms that may offer better equipment, classes and amenities can turn to…