Two days after a Miami Herald investigation pointed the finger at the Department of Children and Families for failing hundreds of children, DCF has launched a new campaign aimed at parent's called "Who's Watching Your Child."
The investigative series by The Miami Herald found more than 475 cases in a span of six years where a child died after Department of Children and Families had been in contact with the family. In some cases, more than 10 reports about the welfare of the child been logged through an abuse hotline.
The new DCF campaign is targeted toward parents who place their children in the care of someone they are not related to. Last year, 12,000 investigations involved a parent's boyfriend or girlfriend as an alleged perpetrator.
"In many of these cases, he or she fell short and felt that they had to compete for attention or affection of the child. The children are seen as being in the way," said Interim DCF Secretary Esther Jacobo.
She says DCF is continuously working to protect children under the agency's care.
"They're focusing on the children that they serve," Jacobo said in a video statement. "They come back everyday in the most difficult circumstances and they come back and do a good job."
Meanwhile, Fla. Gov. Rick Scott said he plans on hiring 400 more DCF investigators and other lawmakers are promising DCF reform.
"We're going to change the system," said State Rep. Gayle Harrell, R-Martin County. "We're going to make it better. One death is too many deaths. We are going to do everything in our power to stop children dying at the hands of an abuser."