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Patrick Thomas Murphy

Born: 1939 in Chicago, Illinois
Pen Name: Patrick T. Murphy

Connection to Illinois: Murphy was born in Chicago and currently resides in the Chicago area.

Biography: Murphy was Public Guardian of Cook County, Illinois, an office unique in the United States. He started his career as a state's attorney in 1964, but grew discouraged and opted for the Peace Corps. In 1967, he began working as a legal services lawyer. He was appointed public guardian in 1978, responsible at first for helping elderly people who were being abused by their relatives or in state institutions and later, in 1987, for neglected or abused children. He has received the Juvenile Justice Award of the American Bar Association and Criminal Justice Award of the governor of Illinois.


Primary Audience(s): Adult readers

Patrick Thomas Murphy on WorldCat :

Selected Titles

  Our kindly parent, the State :
ISBN: 014004230X OCLC: 2632831

Penguin Books, New York : 1977, ©1974.

  Our kindly parent--the State;
ISBN: 0670531111 OCLC: 1002388

Viking Press New York, [1974]

Wasted :
ISBN: 1566631637 OCLC: 36407875

Ivan R. Dee, Chicago, Ill. : 1997.

This is a book about how a system designed to help children is instead helping to destroy them. By trying to preserve families, Patrick Murphy charges, the child welfare system is too often placing children in danger. State agencies and the courts are stuck in hundred-year-old realities and the politics of the 1960s and the 1970s. As the Public Guardian of Cook County, Illinois (an office unique in the United States), Mr. Murphy for almost thirty years has represented abused and neglected children in court cases at every level of the state and federal judiciary, including the U.S. Supreme Court. He has labored in the trenches of the child welfare and juvenile justice systems - "looking after the fish, not the fishermen," as he likes to say. In other words, worrying about the children.