Case of abandoned foster child raises lawmakers’ ire

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Oregon state lawmakers are questioning the state’s foster care agency about a report that a 9-year-old girl in the state’s care was sent to a Montana facility for six months and injected with Benadryl to control her behavior.

A legislative hearing Thursday focused on a report this week by Oregon Public Broadcasting that also revealed caseworkers didn’t visit the girl for months. OPB learned of the case through the child’s public defender.

Officials are working to bring the girl home amid growing concern over the state’s foster care system.

Eighty-five children are currently living in out-of-state facilities — a number that’s more than doubled since 2017.

Oregon Child Welfare officials announced Thursday that they plan to stop sending children to facilities owned by Acadia Healthcare, an organization facing several accusations of neglect and abuse, although some children still remain there.