Child Molestation Lawsuit Filed Against EMQ Families First

In 2012, sexual abuse attorney Robert Allard filed a sexual abuse lawsuit against EMQ FamiliesFirst. The lawsuit alleged that EMQ FamiliesFirst disregarded victim Jane Doe's sexual abuse complaint against Waking Bailey. This put her in a position to be sexually molested a week later and then retaliated against for reporting the crime.

In 2011, a 9-year-old living in the same group home told police that Bailey, on several occasions, molested her and forced her to watch pornography on his cell phone. 

EMQ FamiliesFirst: A Home for Abused Children

EMQ FamiliesFirst is a Los Gatos facility that houses children who are dependents of the court. EMQ FamiliesFirst, now known as Uplift Family Services, is an organization that takes a modern approach to supporting children and adolescents facing complex behavioral health challenges. They aim to help these young individuals recover from trauma, including abuse, severe neglect, addiction, and poverty. Uplift Family Services is dedicated to ensuring that over 90% of youth exiting their programs live in the community, stay in school, and stay out of trouble.

Unfortunately, according to the lawsuit filed by attorney Robert Allard, EMQ FamiliesFirst didn’t do enough to protect the children in their care from a sexual predator. The lawsuit held EMQ FamiliesFirst accountable for the molestation and retaliation against Jane Doe. Even though Jane Doe's allegations were first made in May of 2009, it took EMQ nearly two years to place Bailey on leave. EMQ did so only after Bailey allegedly molested another victim.

Waking Bailey Convicted of Sex Crimes

Bailey faced felony criminal charges for allegedly sexually molesting two at-risk young girls as well as a developmentally disabled young woman. All the victims were female, including three girls under 14. Bailey was also a counselor at Eastfield Ming Quong, a Los Gatos assisted living facility for emotionally disturbed children.

In 2015, Bailey was convicted of sexually abusing four children while serving as a counselor for troubled youths in San Jose and Los Gatos. The court found him guilty by a jury in Santa Clara County Superior Court in San Jose of 11 counts of lewd and lascivious acts with a juvenile and other sex crimes. He faces life in prison for his crimes.

The Infiltration of Sexual Predators in Child Welfare Systems

Sexual predators, like Waking Bailey, can infiltrate systems designed to protect and care for vulnerable populations due to several factors that may create opportunities for abuse. 

Firstly, inadequate vetting processes are a significant issue. When background checks are insufficiently thorough, individuals with a history of predatory behavior or those who are adept at hiding their past actions can slip through the cracks. This lack of rigorous screening can occur due to resource constraints, administrative oversights, or a pressing need to fill staffing gaps, leading to the hiring of unsuitable candidates.

Another contributing factor is some organizations' culture of silence and lack of accountability. Predators exploit environments where concerns are not taken seriously, reports of inappropriate behavior are dismissed, or the institution prioritizes its reputation over the safety of those it serves. In such settings, predators can operate with a sense of impunity, knowing that allegations against them may not lead to significant consequences. Lack of proper training for staff and management in recognizing and responding to signs of abuse further allows predators to manipulate situations to their advantage.

Furthermore, predators often possess manipulative skills that enable them to gain the trust of both their victims and other adults within the system. They may seek positions that offer power and access to potential victims, such as roles in residential facilities, schools, and youth organizations. By establishing themselves as trustworthy and caring figures, they know their actions are less likely to be questioned. They exploit the inherent vulnerabilities of their victims, who may be in desperate need of affection, attention, or support, thereby making these individuals less likely to report abuse or even recognize it as such.

We Hold Group Homes and Youth Serving Organizations Accountable

At Cerri, Boskovich, and Allard, we hold organizations and group homes accountable for the mishandling of sexual abuse allegations. These homes and facilities are supposed to be safe havens for children and adolescents. However, they often fail in their duty of care, choosing to ignore or conceal instances of abuse. 

The sexual abuse lawyers at Cerri, Boskovich, and Allard work hard to initiate change within the system. Through their legal proceedings, we seek compensation for the victims and push for the implementation of stricter oversight, transparent reporting mechanisms, and robust safeguarding policies. Our past work has forced group homes and centers to confront their failings and adopt more stringent measures to protect those under their care.

Contact Our Child Sex Abuse Lawyers

If you or a loved one has suffered childhood sexual abuse or molestation, please call the law firm of Cerri, Boskovich & Allard. We can help guide you through this difficult time. Call our San Jose office at (408) 289-1417 or contact us online to schedule your free, confidential consultation.

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