JUDGE WON'T RETURN 11 KIDS TO PARENTS
- JUDGE WON'T RETURN 11 KIDS TO PARENTS
By Steve Patterson, Jacksonville Times-Union, 5/30/02
A Jacksonville judge has ordered continued state
custody for 11
found living last month in a tiny home with no
electricity or running
The children's parents, Riccardo and Antoinette Young,
have moved into
rented four-bedroom house and paid utility and
car-repair bills since
supporters mailed $16,000 to an agency helping them.
The couple asked
have their children returned in a hearing last week.
guardians favored the idea.
But in a ruling that became known this week, Circuit
Judge Linda F.
McCallum said the children shouldn't go home until the
Children and Families completes a standard house
The order set no timetable. But a lawyer for
Antoinette Young said the
children will likely stay in foster homes an
additional two months or
Children and Families regularly needs more than a
month to schedule a
single child for therapy and will struggle to
accommodate a large
said attorney Carole Vogel.
"I think a couple of months is a realistic
expectation. ... It could
take longer," Vogel said.
The judge's order said therapists would help decide
when the children
have visitations with their parents, and when they
would go home.
The delay frustrated supporters, who argued the Youngs
were poor but
well-meaning and committed parents who shouldn't be
kept from their
Yesterday a national Islamic organization, which
helped the family
the Youngs are Muslims, asked Children and Families'
administrator, Richard Barry, to help unite the
Nihad Awad, executive director of the Council on
Relations, wrote that he feared the Youngs were being
"the family's minority faith and ... the apparent
desire to justify
the children from their home in the first case."
Awad's letter asked
to review whether Children and Families is handling
IMMEDIATE ACTION REQUESTED: (As always, be POLITE.
be used against the family.) Contact Florida's
Department of Children
Families to ask that they assist in the swift
reunification of the
Mr. Richard Barry
Florida Department of Children and Families
5920 Arlington Expressway
Jacksonville, FL 32211
COPY TO: cair@...
Donations for the Youngs can be mailed to:
First Coast Family Center
Attention: Connie Fussell
2747 Art Museum Drive, Suite 100
Jacksonville, FL 32207
Make checks payable to "First Coast Family Center."
Note on the check: "For the Riccardo Young family."
Inform CAIR of your
Do You Yahoo!?
Everything you'll ever need on one web page
from News and Sport to Email and Music Charts