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Department of Children and Families

Rick Scott takes action against nursing home where eight died

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After eight South Florida nursing home residents died when Hurricane Irma knocked out their power, Gov. Rick Scott announced on Thursday night he had directed state officials to block the facility from receiving any further Medicaid payments.

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Ethics panel approves former inspector general’s outside work

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The state’s former chief inspector general will not have an ethical conflict if she works for a company with ties to a group that was once the subject of an investigation she was involved in, the Florida Ethics Commission unanimously ruled Friday.

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Ethics panel could approve ex-Rick Scott official’s consulting work

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Can Melinda Miguel, formerly Gov. Rick Scott‘s inspector general, do consulting work involving a nonprofit doing business with the state’s child-welfare agency if she worked on a whistleblower’s report against that same concern? Yes, according to a staff recommendation of the Florida Commission on Ethics released Wednesday. The commission is scheduled to consider the opinion at its next meeting.

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Rick Scott signs claims bill for abuse survivor Victor Barahona

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Gov. Rick Scott agreed the state needs to pay the remainder of a $5 million settlement to a boy found doused in chemicals while his twin decomposed in the back of their father’s pesticide truck. Scott signed the claims bill (SB 18) to pay Victor Barahona $3.75 million in an abuse case that took the life of his twin sister, Nubia. The twins suffered extreme abuse by their adoptive parents, and in 2011, he was found suffering chemical burns along…

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Florida child welfare providers do more with less, but how much less?

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For the community-based care providers that perform the lion’s share of child welfare services in Florida, the proposed 2017 budget is a disappointment. A press release that accompanied the Jan. 31 release of Republican Gov. Rick Scott’s “Fighting for Florida’s future” budget proposal touts “a  record $632 million to provide core services to children who depend on Florida’s child welfare system.” “Governor Scott and the Legislature have been exceptionally supportive of the child welfare system and [the Department of Children…

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Did DCF create media frenzy after foster child’s suicide to distract from agency errors?

in 2017/Top Headlines by

Naika Venant’s mother vehemently refutes narratives by the state agency in a March 13 report, including suggestion she ‘allegedly’ commented on Facebook Live thread taunting daughter while watching and did nothing; lawyer says agencies ‘abysmally failed’ Naika. *** Naika Venant was a girl whose personality had turned from that of a bright and gifted child – despite her naïveté toward adult subject matter – to one of rebelliousness and anger, according to records and her mother. The dark transition leading…

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February trial date set for John Jonchuck, accused of throwing daughter off St. Pete bridge

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

A Pinellas County court set a trial date for John Jonchuck, arrested in 2015 for throwing his 5-year-old daughter off a St. Petersburg bridge. The Tampa Bay Times reported Monday that the trial will begin early February. In a pretrial hearing Monday, Jonchuck’s three public defenders listened as Pinellas County Circuit Judge Chris Helinger announced the proceedings would begin Feb. 5, 2018, roughly three years after Jonchuck inexplicably threw Phoebe Jonchuck off the Dick Misener Bridge, according to the Times.…

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