MA lawmakers hold oversight hearing after autistic boy in DCF system dies

Massachusetts

BOSTON (WWLP) – An investigation into a young autistic boy’s death has uncovered major issues at the state’s child protection agency.

During an oversight hearing on the matter Tuesday, lawmakers admitted that this was a failure on the state’s part and now they want to put strict reporting requirements in place for DCF workers.

David Almond was 11 when he was removed from his father’s fall river apartment.

At the time, investigators say David was physically abused and neglected by his father John Almond, and his girlfriend Jaclyn Coleman.

However, David was placed back in his father’s care when the pandemic started in March 2020.

“While COVID-19 has added complexities to everything we do, it is not an excuse for the death of a child, David Almond deserved better,” Senator Adam Gomez said.

Tuesday’s oversight hearing showed that social workers assigned to Almond’s case were prevented from holding in-person meetings during the pandemic.

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