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Did FL government budget cuts contribute to boy's death in DJJ lockup?

After Omar Paisley died of a burst appendix in a Miami-Dade juvenile lockup eight years ago, juvenile justice administrators announced sweeping reforms, including on-site medical care around the clock at the Miami facility.

When Eric Perez died Sunday, July10 at the Palm Beach County juvenile jail, there were no doctors or nurses on duty, according to the nurse jailers say they tried in vain to reach.

“Nobody works there at night,” Diana Heras said of lockup medical staff. “There is no state funding for night nurses for any night of the week. They do not have a nurse who works at that ... facility on the night shift, and they do not work weekends.”

Department of Juvenile Justice Secretary Wansley Walters, at the helm for just half a year when 18-year-old Eric perished at the West Palm Beach lockup, said Florida’s historic budget woes — which prompted lawmakers to trim tens of millions in juvenile justice spending this year — are not to blame for his death last week.

Full story here 


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Whether there was medical staff or not should not have made that critical life and death difference for this young man who lost his life due to the callousness and negligence of staff who are supposed to be trained in all areas of supervision of who they are in charge of. When a person, whether a child or adult, are in as much visable pain as described in the articles about this incident, you call an ambulance, or get the person to emergency care as soon as possible, you don't assume it isn't real or make your own diagnosis. This incident wasn't politically or economically driven it was due to lack of compassion, caring and neglect of responsibilities.

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