Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Institute for Child Advocacy Holding Press Conference Today

Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy Executive Director Linda Terrell
Annette Deal – Serenity Deal’s grandmother
Dr. George Young – Holy Temple Baptist Church
WHAT:      Press Conference – OICA will host a press conference to discuss the
                   economic burden of child abuse and the importance of child abuse
                   prevention, the recent developments with the DHS lawsuit settlements
                   and the opportunities to fix our broken child welfare system. Annette 
                   Deal, grandmother of 5-year-old Serenity Deal, will speak briefly about
                   how bold reform to the OK Child Welfare system must happen to
                   ensure no child faces the same fate as Serenity.
WHEN:     Tuesday, April 3, at 11 a.m.
WHERE:  Governor’s Conference Room 2nd floor at the Capitol
WHY:        In 2010, Oklahoma had more than 7,200 confirmed cases of child
                  abuse and neglect; that year, OKDHS assessed and investigated
                  45,811 cases of possible child abuse or neglect. Currently, there are
                  about 8,000 children under the care of about 1,000 DHS employees
                  and caseworkers. The overall economic burden of child abuse reaches
                  billions of dollars annually, including an estimated $1.2 Million in lost
                  productivity for businesses throughout Oklahoma and the United States.
                  Action must be taken to prevent cases like Serenity Deal’s and the
                  countless others like hers from happening again. Our Serenity Project
                 calls for recommendations to reform the broken Oklahoma DHS - child
                 welfare system in order to better protect our kids.

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