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

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