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Foster Care

Formerly Incarcerated Mothers vs. Foster Care

BY: BECKY FLAUM

Janet Taverez was in prison at the Taconic Correctional Facility in Westchester when she found out that her parental rights of daughter, Genesis, then 3 years old, had been terminated.

“I punched a glass window,” she says, showing a scar on her left hand. “I remember feeling frustrated; there was an emptiness that my child was being taken from me.”

Taverez, 44, has been clean since March 2008. She struggled with drug abuse since the age of 19 and has been in and out of prison for 6 years. Her parental rights were terminated under a federal law that forbids a child from being in foster care for more than 24 months. Today Taverez faces a similar custody struggle with the courts over her 7-year-old son, Julian.

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