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Dougherty listed among leaders in child deaths

ALBANY, Ga. — Dougherty County did not appear to fare well in a recent report on child deaths in Georgia.

The Georgia Department of Human Services (DHS) Division of Family and Children Services (DFCS) continues to implement measures hoping to protect Georgia’s children.

As part of this, DFCS has announced that it is publishing child death data on a quarterly basis to ignite conversations and spur communities to action across Georgia.

A report released Friday gives an analysis of child deaths in the state from January through Sept. 30 of this year. It shows that Dougherty County — with six child deaths — had the third highest rate in Georgia for that time period.

The two counties to have higher rates were Fulton and Clayton counties in metro Atlanta, with 10 and nine deaths, respectively. DFCS Region 10, which encompasses 14 counties in Southwest Georgia, had 15 child deaths overall, the report shows.

“This quarterly report is an attempt to look at the data in this area in a uniform manner, to be transparent, and to seek to identify trends that will allow us to protect children as best we can,” said DHS Commissioner Clyde L. Reese III, in a statement. “The entire agency will continue to strive to operate in a manner that promotes coordination, cooperation, and communication across all internal and external partners who care about the welfare of children and families.”

DFCS reviewed more than 150 child deaths that were reported to the department. Of those the agency reviewed, 120 had DFCS history prior to the child’s death. For the purposes of the analysis, DFCS history was defined as children whose families have had contact with the agency within the last five years.

Statewide, January had the most child deaths of any month — with 17 total deaths. In a breakdown on manner of death of those with DFCS history, 34 percent were from natural causes, 21 percent were accidental and 13 percent were homicides. The remainder accounted for suicides, pending or undetermined, the report showed.

“Our intent is to learn from these tragic events so that no child shall die in vain,” said DHS Division of Family and Children Services Director Ron Scroggy in a news release. “As such, we believe the next step toward creating safer communities for our children is to continue to educate the public about the harsh realities surrounding child fatalities. We hope that by making this data available communities will be compelled to work with us to keep kids safe.

“The complexity of these children’s circumstances that are revealed through our team’s staffing often cannot be boiled down to a one sentence summary. We will continue to respond to the community as answers become available to us, and use the information we have to educate Georgians.”

Officials with DFCS say they initiated several public awareness campaigns earlier in the year to educate Georgians on child death prevention. Topics included the importance of a safe sleep environment for children, water safety, fire safety and car seat safety.

To access the DFCS Quarterly Child Death Analysis, visit http://dhs.georgia.gov/protecting-georgias-most-precious-asset.

Comments

FryarTuk 1 year, 5 months ago

Review the above comments by the 2 state bureacrats. Note the last sentence by Scroggy "We will continue to respond to the community as answers become available to us, and use the information we have to educate Georgians.” Now what in their prattle was instructive? Beyond the very sad story of the loss of children's lives absolutely nothing was informative and certainly of no help to compel anyone to action. What a couple of humps.

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Amazed2 1 year, 5 months ago

Well yes very very sad that Albany is high on the list for child deaths too. Just sad but realistically does not surprise because Albany has so many little children here born into a culture of having children and having multiple childen to get extra benefits from the Welfare Programs. Apparently the children are brought into this world with a price on their head. They end up being raised or allowed to grow in bad situations. Mothers out partying on the government money boyfriends hanging around for the money and more booty. Just sad.

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stc1993 1 year, 5 months ago

Don't leave out selling SSN's for HOH income tax refunds & EIC's. They can get $500-$800 for a good SSN.

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Amazed2 1 year, 5 months ago

Well yes very very sad that Albany is high on the list for child deaths too. Just sad but realistically does not surprise because Albany has so many little children here born into a culture of having children and having multiple childen to get extra benefits from the Welfare Programs. Apparently the children are brought into this world with a price on their head. They end up being raised or allowed to grow in bad situations. Mothers out partying on the government money boyfriends hanging around for the money and more booty. Just sad.

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chinaberry25 1 year, 5 months ago

My child was born because I wanted him, not because I wanted him for money. I have always tried to do what was best for him including keeping him safe. Unfortunately not all mothers are like me. There are too many selfish people who do not care what happens to their kids until the welfare is taken away. Accidents do happen, but it seem to be a matter of chance here. Those poor babies are a very sad thing. You can get huffed up all you want, but just how long does it take to buckle up a child. You do it for love.

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VSU 1 year, 5 months ago

Another negative stat that Albany is among the leaders in. Albany is among the leaders of unemployment, crime and poverty, so it should come as no surpriise that Albany is among the leaders of child deaths.

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Outtahere 1 year, 5 months ago

All you have to do is take a moment and ride around low income apartments or low income areas of the city - ANY city for that matter. You can see first hand how the children are being raised - VERY NEGLECTFULLY!! Most children run around unsupervised while the parents are ..... well I'm not sure what they're doing but they're not watching their kids.

Also, if you wait around in Wal-Mart and watch purchases being made by food stamp recipients, you will also note that most of the food is junk. Mostly sugary drinks and the cheapest of everything. I know most of you would say that is all they can afford, but I beg to differ. Very rarely do you see fruit and/or vegetables being bought. How do I know this you say?? Well, I have worked with different social services for years and have done a little research on this topic. I watched and still do watch what's going on around me in the grocery store.

And finally, not only are the kids raising themselves from a VERY early age, they're not getting proper nutrition, NOR do their parents care about their education. It's easy to see why their are so many child deaths here in "The Good Life City." It won't change until there are restrictions placed on the programs. Right now, the way the system is set up is the more babies you have, the more money you receive. Of course that looks good to women with no education or any desire to be decent, tax paying citizens.

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