By Matthew Taub
Special to Brooklyn Daily Eagle from Brooklyn Brief
Protesters stood outside the Administration for Children's Services' Brooklyn Office Friday afternoon, claiming that the agency tears young children away from their blood relatives for no reason.
“The child welfare system has failed in every possible way,” said Dorin Matthews, founder and assistant director of the FPA-Foundation, an activist group that led the protest. “As a community we can no longer allow foster care agencies to abuse their power of authority over the children and families that they are serving.”
Members of foundation stood with bullhorns, signs and flyers on Montague Street in Brooklyn Heights, engaging with anyone who would listen to expound upon their claims.
Among other children, they mentioned the plight of a young Lorenzo Manson, a 9-year-old from Brooklyn, who is being adopted by a foster parent through the Mercy First Child Care Agency despite a blood relative being ready and willing to provide care.
“Tracy Breaker, Lorenzo’s Aunt, was told on July 8 that the boy would be adopted by the foster parent,” explained social worker and FPA protestor Sylvia Hooper. “For two years now, this agency had no answer as to why Lorenzo was not placed with his aunt as a resource.”
The protesters claim their complaints to family court, city council members and other elected officials have gone unheeded.
The FPA-Foundation, comprised of social workers and activists in the adoption and foster care industry, helps organize the community around social justice issues and people affected by the child welfare system, such as parents, foster parents, grandparents, fathers and children. FPA provides community advocates for foster youths and organizes parents around injustices that they experience with the child welfare system.
We have reached out to the Bureau of Child Care’s Brooklyn Office and Mercy First Child Care for comment.