Court reform must follow death of little Aaden Moreno

Though we want to think it is so, the recent death of 7-month-old Aaden Moreno at the hands of his father was not a rare event, but an all-too-common outcome of a child custody case. The child’s mother had sought a protective order based on the father’s history of abuse and threats against the mother and child. There is now a substantial body of scientific research that would make family court judges’ jobs easier, but our children will not be protected until we rely on domestic violence experts instead of general practitioners and integrate this important research into the standard court practices. The Safe Child Act is an evidence-based approach requiring that the health and safety of children must be the first priority in all custody and visitation decisions.

Child Protection: A system crying for change

The Connecticut Department of Children and Families has adopted a “differential response system” that allows its caseworkers more flexibility in reacting to various kinds of child abuse and neglect, depending on the risk to the family. Families and staff say this new kind of intervention is more effective, satisfying and respectful.