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Judge Clears Suspended Social Worker

An administrative law judge recently ruled social worker Lorna Hornbeek was unfairly suspended from her job, according to this article in California’s

Hornbeek ordered a newborn child and two-year-old removed from a home of a mother who tested positive for PCP. The woman had shown signs of intoxication while delivering the newborn in 2008.

The children were allowed to return home and the family was put on supervision. The complaint was later dropped. However, the family filed a lawsuit against Los Angeles County, claiming emotional distress. They were awarded $350,000 in a settlement and Hornbeek was suspended for 30 days.

However, the judge found Hornabeek’s actions were “entirely reasonable,” despite the fact the family home was clean and the parents had no criminal record. The judge recommended Hornbeek’s record be cleared and she be paid for lost time and benefits.

This is believed to be the first case of a Los Angeles County social worker being suspended for doing her job. Hornbeek had years of service and an exemplary record.

“If they can do this to someone like Lorna, they can do it to anybody,” her attorney Rees Lloyd said.

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