Rhode Island

Death of 9-Year-Old RI Girl Prompts Policy Changes at DCYF

The death of a 9 year-old girl with cerebral palsy who was under the care of a single mother with seven other special needs foster children is prompting reforms at Rhode Island's Department of Children, Youth and Families.

The Providence Journal reports DCYF Director Trista Piccola announced on Friday a series of policy and personnel changes in response to the January death of Zah-Nae Rothgeb in a squalid home in Warwick.

Among them is capping the number of children who can be placed in a foster home to five unless the department's director approves it.

Police have charged Michele Rothgeb with child neglect and cruelty. They say Zah-Nae Rothgeb was found dead in a bathtub. The state medical examiner determined she died of complications of cerebral palsy, including seizures.

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