DCYF: We take every child neglect claim seriously

Willow Ramos (Facebook photo)

WARWICK, R.I. (WPRI) — While the state Medical Examiner’s Office is working to determine how a baby girl died in Warwick, a representative from the Department of Children, Youth and Families says his agency is investigating.

Ryan Beeley, the father of Willow Ramos, is charged with neglect in the 7-month-old’s death.

Dennis Riel wouldn’t comment specifically on this case because of privacy laws, but he said they take every claim of child neglect seriously.

According to Riel, the DCYF gets 15,000 phone calls about suspected child abuse every year.

Last year, investigators found most of claims unsubstantiated but if it’s a confirmed case, it’s referred to family court.

“I think that DCYF, it is always in an ongoing effort for all child welfare agencies throughout the us, including Rhode Island, to improve,” said Elizabeth Burke Bryant, executive director of Rhode Island Kids Count. “So I think DCYF has been under a lot of internal review of its processes, a lot of reforms happening there.”

If the court sustains the allegation, the case is assigned to a social worker, who then works with the family.