An Ohio court has apparently released a 9-year-old boy from the supervision of Cuyahoga County Children & Family Services after he lost more than 50 pounds while in foster care and while living with an uncle in Columbus. Additional information about the case appears in Issue 421 of this Update.
The boy, who came to the attention of authorities in March 2010 when he was taken to a hospital with breathing problems, was released to his mother’s custody under protective supervision in March 2012. He has gained a few pounds, but because he continues to work out regularly at a YMCA and has been monitored by a Big Brother, and because his mother will evidently be able to access agency assistance for 90 days, the court determined that the child’s interest had been sufficiently protected.
During the most recent court proceedings, the prosecuting attorney reportedly recommended that the child’s mother consider hiring a personal chef to serve healthy meals. She has apparently secured a job, but an American Civil Liberties Union attorney involved in the case indicated that a personal chef would not fit in her budget even if the county picked up half the tab. According to a family services spokesperson, other counseling options are available to the mother, and if she continues to properly care for the boy, the case will not be returned to court. See The Plain Dealer, May 10, 2012.