Will We Save the Children?

Will We Save the Children?

Mayor Koch’s face stared out from the bus poster. “I want you to have my children,” the caption read, part of a stepped-up campaign to recruit badly needed foster homes. After six years of the Koch administration, its brazenness should not have shocked. Still, it did, for the photo and slogan underscored the callousness with which successive city and state administrations have treated the needs of New York City’s abused and neglected children.

“This problem didn’t start with Ed Koch or Mario Cuomo,” says Richard Murphy, coordinator of the Neighborhood Family Services Coalition, but they have let it continue. Noting that the mayor prides himself on a combative
“leadership style,” Murphy believes that Koch has “made it easier for people to look away” from what is perceived as mostly a problem of the poor (read: blacks and Hispanics).

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Lima