ABC10’s reporting on California’s conservatorship system awarded

Andie Judson’s reporting on the “Price of Care” series led to changes in California’s conservatorship laws.

CALIFORNIA, USA — ABC10 investigative journalist Andie Judson received the James Madison Freedom of Information Award for her reporting on California’s conservatorship system.

“The Price of Care: Taken by the State” is a two-year investigation digging into the legally complex legal tool that gives civil rights and liberties of someone unable to care for themselves to another person or entity. In Season II, Judson and the ABC10 Originals team investigated the state agency responsible for the rights and needs of all Californians with disabilities, including separating families by conserving people with disabilities and cutting all contact and communication with their loved ones.

“Her tenacious and compassionate reporting shows that facilities conserving people with developmental disabilities have gone unmonitored, that staff evaluating conservatorships are grossly underpaid, and how individuals under an inappropriate type of conservatorship can have their rights stripped completely,” the Northern California Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists wrote.

Judson received the award in the television/video category.

Watch the full series: “The Price of Care: Taken by the State” 

The five-episode investigation showed how DDS – a massive state agency – is a conservator to over 400 individuals with disabilities, responsible for their specific needs. The series revealed how after getting conservatorship, DDS then uses its power to separate families and isolate those they conserve in care facilities not regularly checked.

Not only is her award-winning reporting shining a light on the abuse facing some of the most vulnerable Californians, but it’s also leading to legislative changes. 

“Reporting by others about Britney Spears was important… but this is the real deal,” said attorney and advocate Tom Coleman. “(Investigative Reporter) Andie Judson has given a voice to the thousands of adults with developmental

Read the rest

Empowering women through unexpected pregnancy means supporting them beyond the birth

This column is an opinion by Tia Gerwatoski, a volunteer with the group 40 Days for Life in Calgary. For more information about CBC’s Opinion section, please see the FAQ.

One of the unfortunate misconceptions surrounding the abortion debate is that what we call pro-life advocacy ends with the child’s birth — abandoning the mother, her newborn, and any sort of responsibility after that act. This couldn’t be further from the truth.

With the subject of abortion access in the news, following last month’s decision by the US Supreme Court to overturn the abortion protections in Roe v. Wade, I think it’s important for you to know that those of us involved in this movement in Canada strive to elevation women by providing knowledge, time and assistance, along with community support to empower them if they decide to follow through with their pregnancy.

Fortunately for Canadians who make that decision, there is a wealth of resources, support and care available.

Canada has pregnancy resource centers in towns and cities from coast to coast, where the priority is to journey with mothers in understanding the resources and supports available to them if they decide to keep their baby.

Network hub

Studies show that, although reasoning is multifaceted, a large percentage of women have abortions due to a lack of financial resources. Many pregnancy resource centers act as a hub of networking and connection to deal with issues such as this; they have access to a wide scope of referrals to other agencies for a range of housing options, including emergency housing, long-term housing, and low-income housing, as well as information on subsidies.

Financial mentors are provided and referrals are made to agencies that educate on credit counselling, debt consolidation and financial education so that women can create a plan to

Read the rest