A reader writes:
I work for the state child welfare agency for Missouri. We have been routinely asked if the economy has affected the amount of child abuse and child neglect hotline calls that are made or the number of kids coming into foster care. So far, it has not. We assume that because most of our clients are already soaking in poverty that the economic downturns don't affect them because they currently survive in that same circumstance.
This is no longer the case. Today, we had our first child enter foster care because the parent's unemployment ran out and the parent could no longer care for them. The economy is now affecting us.