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'Anayah's Advocates' meets with Dept. of Human Resources

A group of Foster Parents and other supporters in the community met with the Maryland Department of Human Resources as they push for change within the Foster Care system. WHAG’s Shayna Halper has the latest, after a tragic death in the community.
FREDERICK COUNTY, Md. - 21-month-old Anayah Williams was pronounced dead in the early hours of the morning back on March 15, and investigators say she died at the hands of her parents, Frankie and Stephanie Williams.

The little girl was reunited with her parents for only three weeks, before allegedly suffering abuse that lead to her death.

Now, a group of Foster parents and other community members are pushing for change within the Foster Care system.

“We don’t need another tragedy like this one to happen again,” said Anayah’s Advocate Cathy Sipocz.

Anayah’s advocates met with leaders from the Maryland Department of Human Resources on Monday.

“The public needs to get involved, we all need to voice for change, these are innocent children who depend on us to speak out for them,” said Cindi Webb of Anayah’s Advocates.

The group expressed concerns, saying a child’s well being and safety should be top priority.

“We need to change the favoritism towards the biological and put the on the children,” said Maryland State Delegate Kathy Afzali.

Ted Dallas, Secretary of the Maryland Department of Human Resources said, his office came to Frederick to listen and talk about how the two groups can now work together.

“The death of Anayah Williams was a terrible tragedy that impacted all of us deeply at the department. So mainly we’re here to listen, hear what they have to say and talk about ideas we have to make the system a little bit better, and my hope is through that discussion we can make kids safer in Maryland,” said Dallas.

The Department of Human Resources says they are looking to add new protections to state law guiding the process of reunifying children in foster care with their families. One of the proposed amendments would protect a child who has a serious unexplained injury.

Anayah's foster parents are asking to remain anonymous at this time due to ongoing litigation, however they did attend today's meeting with Anayah's Advocates.

To learn more about the changes The Maryland Department of Human Resources is proposing head to: DHR
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