March 18, 2013

The Children’s Law Center, a nonprofit organization that provides legal advocacy for abused and neglected children, and the Denver office of national law firm Polsinelli Shughart have established Partnering to Protect Kids, a program designed to keep Colorado children safe from child abuse and neglect through raising awareness about key issues among the public and legislators.

“The goal of Partnering to Protect Kids is to educate the public, legislators and other stakeholders on issues impacting our most vulnerable citizens—Colorado’s abused and neglected children,” said Stephanie Villafuerte, Children’s Law Center executive director. “By combining the expertise and resources of both the Children’s Law Center and Polsinelli Shughart, we can strengthen our ability to combat child abuse.”

The 2013 goal of Partnering to Protect Kids is to impact legislative change to ensure that comprehensive, multidisciplinary child fatality reviews are completed every time a child in Colorado dies from abuse or neglect. This initiative prioritizes educating the public about challenges that exist within the current child fatality review process as well as providing solutions to ensure that Colorado has the preventative strategies it needs to mitigate child abuse deaths in the future.

“The child fatality review process in Colorado today is fragmented and resources that could be used to effectuate change are split between different agencies,” said Stacy Carpenter, shareholder in Polsinelli Shughart’s Denver office and board member of the Children’s Law Center. “As such, Colorado does not currently review all cases in which children die from abuse and neglect, making it nearly impossible to learn from and prevent similar tragedies. We’re confident that Partnering to Protect Kids can have a positive impact on the lives and safety of children in Colorado.”

In order to educate legislators, inform the public and support abused and neglected children, Partnering to Protect Kids is focused on the following in 2013:

  • Hosting national leaders and educational events for legislators and the public on child welfare issues
  • Sponsoring the Prevent Child Abuse rally at the Colorado State Capitol on April 1, which is the first day of Child Abuse Awareness Month
  • Increasing the number of total volunteers supporting pro-bono services for children with the addition of roughly 60 attorney and staff member volunteers from Polsinelli Shughart’s Denver office

About Partnering to Protect Kids
The Children’s Law Center and Polsinelli Shughart have partnered to find ways to improve the lives of Colorado’s children and protect them from abuse and neglect. As experts on child abuse and neglect issues, legal advocates, and community leaders, we will work together to make 2013 a year of action and education within the legislature and among community stakeholders. Together we will ensure that the voices of Colorado’s abused and neglected children are heard.

About Polsinelli Shughart
Serving corporations, institutions, entrepreneurs, and individuals, our attorneys build enduring relationships by providing legal counsel informed by business insight to help clients achieve their objectives. This commitment to our clients’ businesses has helped us become the fastest-growing, full-service law firm in America*. With more than 630 attorneys in 16 cities, our national law firm is a recognized leader in the industries driving our growth, including health care, financial services, real estate, life sciences and technology, energy and business litigation. The firm can be found online at Polsinelli Shughart PC. In California, Polsinelli Shughart LLP.

Resolving disputes and lawsuits is an essential part of what we do at Polsinelli Shughart. Regardless of the nature of a dispute, the depth of experience of the Polsinelli Shughart Litigation Department provides clients with effective representation in attempting to achieve a favorable resolution. Extensive courtroom experience gives our litigation team the advantage in a wide variety of cases. When we negotiate or litigate, we do so with the understanding the goals of our clients vary, and those goals may change from case to case.

*Inc Magazine, September 2012

About Children’s Law Center
The mission of the Children's Law Center is to change the lives of abused and neglected children through compassionate legal advocacy, education and public policy reform. We serve more than 1,500 children each year. We create stability for children in foster care while pursuing a permanent, nurturing home. We also touch the lives of all of Colorado's abused and neglected children through our appellate work and public policy reform. Founded in 1981, the Children’s Law Center is a nonprofit organization that relies heavily on community support.