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FROM THIS EPISODE

Neglected children are abused and dying in alarming numbers while supposedly under the supervision of LA County. Infants are left sitting on desks for hours waiting for foster homes; kids caught up in juvenile justice can’t contact their social workers and don’t trust them anyway. After 8 months and hundreds of hours of testimony, the latest blue-ribbon commission says not a single person defended the current system. Would a new, “child welfare czar” make a difference?

Later, on To The Point, the developing crisis in Ukraine could produce a war over natural gas between Russia and Western Europe. We’ll look at what that could mean for the worldwide supply of energy, as the US is on the verge of a possible oil and gas “boom.”

Banner Image Credit: Eric Haynes

Producers:
Katie Cooper
Andrea Brody
Gideon Brower

Main Topic Child Protection: "A State of Emergency" 18 MIN

For decades, there have been horror stories about kids under the supervision of LA County. In 1996, 2008 and 2012, child protection services have been criticized and supposedly upgraded, but many of the 36,000 kids under County jurisdiction are still “unseen, unheard and unsafe.” That’s the conclusion of the latest blue-ribbon commission, appointed last year when 8-year old Gabriel Fernandez was brutally killed after six visits by social workers, who failed to remove him from the custody of his mother and her boyfriend. They’re both facing charges of 1st degree murder. Next Tuesday, the commission will make a report to the Board of Supervisors.

Guests:
Marilyn Flynn, School of Social Work, USC (@USCDeanFlynn)
Dan Scott, LA County Sheriff's Dept Special Victims Bureau
Mark Ridley-Thomas, LA County Board of Supervisors (@mridleythomas)

Reporter's Notebook What Does Tribune's Dividend Payout Mean for the LA Times? 6 MIN, 20 SEC

Democratic Congressman Henry Waxman says the Tribune Company’s plan to spin off its newspapers threatens the future of the LA Times. Meantime, the conservative publisher of the Orange County Register is starting up a new Los Angeles Register. 

Tim Rutten spent 40 years with the LA Times as reporter, editor and media columnist. He now writes weekly for the LA News Group, which owns the Daily News and other local papers.

Guests:
Tim Rutten, Los Angeles Daily News

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