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Report: DCF Not Responsible for Boy’s Death

Children-Kids playing
By BOB SALSBERG and STEVE LeBLANC, Associated Press

BOSTON (AP) — An independent group that examined the state Department of Children and Families says the agency should not be held responsible for the death of a 5-year-old Fitchburg boy.

But the Child Welfare League of America, in its final report released Wednesday, said the case raised a number of significant issues and that the agency, along with other adults, failed to protect Jeremiah Oliver.

Gov. Deval Patrick asked the organization to conduct a review of the agency after Jeremiah disappeared last year. His family was under agency supervision. The boy’s remains were discovered last month.

The league issued a number of preliminary recommendations in March. State officials say many have already been implemented.

The final report said many of the agency’s case policies and protocols are outdated and the agency is understaffed.

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