Connor B. v. Patrick, No. 13-2467 (1st Cir. 2014)Annotate this Case
Defendants in this case were the Governor of Massachusetts, the Secretary of the Executive Office of Health and Human Services, and the Commissioner of the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families (DCF). Six children brought this class action in federal court on behalf of an estimated 8,500 children who are (or will be) committed to Massachusetts foster care custody as a result of their having suffered from abuse or neglect. Plaintiffs asserted that DCF so exposes the plaintiff class to harm or the risk of harm that it is unconstitutional and violates the Adoption Assistance and Child Welfare Act of 1980. Plaintiffs sought a broad injunction preventing Defendants from subjecting the plaintiff children to practices that violate their rights. The district court granted judgment for Defendants on all claims. The First Circuit affirmed, holding that Plaintiffs failed to demonstrate class-wide constitutional violations, nor a violation of the AACWA, and so injunctive relief was not warranted.