Tuesday, April 13, 2021 | midnight
Last week in Las Vegas, a 3-year-old child was found sleeping in the hallway of a hotel. A 2-year-old was found wandering around an apartment complex unsupervised.
“I must have sent out 15 reports to my guys in the last 20 minutes; about seven of them were kids wandering in the neighborhood,” said Sgt. Paul Gambini, head of the Metro Police abuse and neglect unit.
Last year in Clark County, about 88% of children placed in foster care were for neglect cases, according to the state Division of Child and Family Services.That’s 2,050 children.
“That’s really telling us that our families don’t have enough resources,” said Amanda Haboush-Deloye, interim executive director of the Nevada Institute for Children’s Research and Policy.
Some parents are too overwhelmed trying to pay for food and rent to afford child care, Haboush-Deloye said.
“So, they make a choice: ‘Do I leave the kids at home unsupervised or do I not feed them the next day or do I have us living on the streets?’” she said.
This year, there have been 29 child fatalities or near deaths in Clark County, according to the Division of Child and Family Services. Last year, there were 75.
Many of the near fatalities were the result of children getting into marijuana or other drugs. Some children drowned in pools.
In one near-death case in March, a 1-year-old child fell from a third-story balcony. In October, a toddler died after being locked in a car.
In at least fatal or near-fatal cases, caretakers did not properly manage the health of a child with a medical condition. In one case, a parent left the hospital with their child against the doctor’s advice.
Many suspected abuse cases cannot be confirmed because the