RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — This morning, a group of lawmakers worked on a bill to ensure the safety of children returning from foster homes.
“Rylan’s Law” aims to prevent what happened to a Moore County toddler last year.
Rylan Ott 23-month-old was just shy of his second birthday when he drowned after wandering away from his Carthage home.
His mother had red flags, but a volunteer guardian, Pam Reed, said the Moore County Department of Social Services missed them.
Thursday, Reed testified to lawmakers about how she believes Moore County dropped the ball and failed Rylan.
An investigation into Moore County’s DSS showed many cracks in the system, though no law was broken.
Reed and the foster parents objected to Rylan going back to his mom, but a judge ordered so anyway.
The guardian said DSS told her they didn’t have time to drive Rylan to site visits to evaluate his mother’s ability to care for him.
If passed, the law would require two successful supervised site visits before recommending children go back to their parents.
“I would want someone to do this for my child. I would want someone to stand up and say my child’s life needs to matter for something and that’s probably why — one of the reasons I kept pushing for this,” said Reed.
Rylan’s then-30-year-old mother, Samantha Bryant, had a history of child abuse. She’s now awaiting trial on several charges.
Meanwhile, Moore County DSS saw its own changes with its director resigning.