My mom is deceased. Drug overdose. I stayed with my auntie until I was 11. She was abusive, verbally and physically. I went to maybe 15-20 foster homes. They were all ladies, no man in the home. My baby is one. His daddy’s family took him to see his daddy. He wouldn’t give my baby back. The baby was in the hospital with a lung problem. I asked my social worker if I could go to see my baby. She said I had to wait until my next court date in two months to see the judge. So I went AWOL to see my baby. They picked me up and now I am 241.1—dual custody between dependency and delinquency for going AWOL. I just wanted to see my baby.
I like Ms. Perez, one of the corrections officers. All the staff here just order you. Ms. Perez talks to me.
—T.L., age 16