The lawsuit, first filed in 2010, kicked out by a judge and then reinstated in 2012, asked for compensation for seven former foster children who were injured while in the care of Clark County. The settlement, which was approved by the Clark County Commission back in November, received final approval just this week. Other than the $500,000 that will cover attorney fees, the entire $2.075 million will be disbursed to the children, some of whom are still in foster care.
The advocacy group, National Center for Youth Law, who filed the suit in behalf of the children, will now focus on child welfare reform in the state of Nevada. Children who are taken from their homes and placed in the care of the state should expect better treatment than they received in the home they were removed from. Too many times foster children enter a home that is abusive or neglectful. Such was the case for one of the boys who is named as a plaintiff in the lawsuit. Suffering from brain injury because of a shaking incident that took place shortly after he was placed in the state’s care, his parents and grandparents are grateful for the settlement, but more concerned that the state’s practices need changing.
Another of the plaintiffs, who is choosing not to be named, was abused both sexually and physically while in care of the state. This victim will be receiving $200,000 over a 20-year-period, but sees the settlement as a win/lose outcome. “I wish they would have made changes as well to better suit the needs of children who are in foster care,” the former foster child told the Las Vegas Review Journal.
Settlement money is coming from the county’s Liability Fund and Liability Pool Fund which currently has $26 million.