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Kimber Douglas et. al. v. Washington State DSHS

Kim Douglas and her partner, Brent Babb, are deaf, poor, and have two young children. To make money the family collects and sells scrap metal. On the early morning of February 2, 2017, the family parked their old car on East Sprague to be present first thing in the morning when the scrap metal buyer opened. The police arrived, attempted to communicate with the deaf parents, and, ultimately, ordered that the parents’ children be taken to the hospital for a check up. The check up happened at the hospital with the on-call doctor determining that the children were fine and free to go. However, before the children could depart a representative from the Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) arrived and, without the benefit of a qualified ASL specialist, took the children into government custody. The children remained in custody away from their parents for over one year. A copy of Ms. Douglas and Mr. Babb’s discrimination and negligence complaint against the DSHS is available here.


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