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Runaway Foster Youth: Child Protection Ombudsman Task Force


The Timothy Montoya Task Force to Prevent Children from Running Away from Out-of-Home Placement was established by House Bill 22-1375 for the purpose of analyzing the root causes of why children run away from out-of-home placement.

The Colorado Lab conducted focus groups with children in out-of-home placement and young adults under 22 who aged out of the child protection system. An additional series of focus groups with out-of-home placement providers was also conducted to determine what conditions lead children to run away from out-of-home placement, the provider efforts to locate children who have run away, and the services provided to a runaway child upon the child’s return. Focus group findings were shared with the Task Force to inform their work to develop a consistent, prompt, and effective response to recover

Elizabeth Montoya’s 12-year-old son, Timmy, was killed after running away from Tennyson Center for Children and being struck by a car. (Anna Hewson, 9News; courtesy Colorado Sun)

missing children, and address the safety and well-being of a child upon the child’s return to out-of-home placement.

To learn more, please contact Dr. Kristin Klopfenstein.