18-46 Segment 1: Reporting “Bad Parents”

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Just about anyone can report a parent to a child abuse hotline. It’s meant to protect children, but all too often, parents are reported when no abuse or neglect exists in order to retaliate for a divorce or some other grievance. And though the world is actually safer for children than it used to be, some parents are reported for merely letting children play outside or walk to school without an adult in attendance, what was once thought of as normal. Some activists say this robs children of independence. An expert and a woman who went through an unjustified child abuse investigation discuss.


  • Corey Widen, mother reported to child abuse hotline, Wilmette, IL
  • Rachel Ruttenberg, Executive Director, Family Defense Center, Chicago

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