When a baby cries for meth instead of milk.
Every 15 minutes, a baby is born addicted to drugs.
The rising tide of drug-dependent infants has hospitals, social service agencies and courts scrambling.
In the most dangerous situations, the state takes temporary custody of these infants to ensure their safety.
Here is the truth about the child protective system...
The system is so broken that some of these infants are never returned home on the one hand, or adopted on the other.
Infants have no right to have their cases adjudicated on a timely basis, so some spend their entire lives without a family. Johnny entered care as a toddler and was moved 46 times by the state. He is one of 20,000 kids this year who will age out of the system without a family.
The system is so broken that criminals have attorneys but their victims often don’t.
Half of the states do not provide legal representation for babies and children in protective proceedings.
The system is so broken that the penalty for exposing an animal to drugs is greater than the penalty for exposing an infant.
A man who gave his dog meth recently was charged with felony animal abuse, fined $50,000 and sentenced to jail. By comparison, a majority of drug-exposed infants are sent straight home. The parent is viewed as the victim, so the child protection system generally offers them rehabilitation, counseling, cab fare to services and more.