Parents with disabilities rights

published in the Republican January 2021

Five years ago, the Department of Justice and Health and Human Services, in response to a complaint filed by a disabled mother, determined that the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families discriminated against a mother who has intellectual disabilities.  The department felt that due to her disability, her newborn should be removed and her parental rights be terminated.

Over time, complaints have been received from parents with other disabilities.  For example, the state denied reasonable modifications and failed to provide equal access to its services.  Under an agreementthat was reached in November, the Department of Children and Families “will not base decisions about removal of a child on stereotypes or generalizations about persons with disabilities, or on a parent’s disability, diagnosis or intelligence measures (e.g., IQ scores) alone.”  Furthermore, disabled parents must be permitted to receive the department’s services “unless the parent poses a direct threat to the health or safety of others.”

Even though the Department of Children and Families is committed to the settlement, it denies all allegations of discrimination.  This is considered a landmark decision protecting the rights of parents with disabilities.

Comments are closed.

This entry was posted on Wednesday, January 6th, 2021 at 11:07 am and is filed under Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

Last 10 Posts

  • Hard Times
  • Crip Camp
  • Aging parents
  • Writing
  • Disabilities
  • Accessibility
  • Love and confidence
  • Pandemic strategy
  • New beginnings
  • Martin Luther king