Friday, May 13, 2011

Good article about problems that sometimes happen with CPS

Three years ago the Texas Child Protective Service took over 400 children away from their families. There was a few allegations of abuse, but the main reason the CPS took the children away appears to have been they didn't like what the parents were teaching the children. It was the wrong thing to do. The children suffered being kept away from their loving parents.

As Foster Care parents Janine and I recognize that there is a balance between being too slow to yank children and too quick to yank children. One of the scary things that I learned while reading about the FLDS incident three years ago is that a large fraction of social workers came from dysfunctional homes. They go into every situation with the view point that there is probably abuse and they have to save the children. They want to save someone else, because no one was there for them. Their attitude is too often the parents are guilty until proven innocent.

Should the state be able to take your kids, or does it have too much power? explores a recent example of this. In Michigan a father took his son to a baseball game. While at the game he bought his son some lemonade. Turns out it was Hard Lemonade with alcohol in it. Someone reported this and the police took the boy away from his father. The poor 7-year-old boy was away from his family for three days.

The article has another painful incident where CPS took a baby away from the mother but wouldn't allow the father to have the baby, even though the father was providing foster care for other children. How does this make any sense?

There is a push in Michigan to pass a law, Leo's Law, which would only allow CPS to take a child away from his family if the child was in immediate danger. It is the standard for most other states. If you live in Michigan you might want to encourage your representatives to pass it.
Hat tip: Miazagora via Facebook.

1 comment:

Three Turtles and Their Pet Librarian said...

Ugh. I had a child in my care whose mother had abused her (at two weeks old) and the father took her to the hospital. Dumped the wife immediately, jumped through all the hoops they asked him to, passed two lie detector tests that showed he had no part of the abuse and did not know of it until the day he took her to the ER, and it still took him almost a YEAR to get her back! Thankfully she is now 7 and with him and his new, loving wife - we still keep in touch regularly - but what a nightmare of a first year! She still has problems from the physical abuse, and who knows what residual effects from the separation - even though she was with a very nice foster family:)

At the same time, I'm not sure immediate danger is enough when some are being so badly neglected - would you have to wait until they had serious health issues to step in? To me that would cause too many situations where CPS waited too long to remove a child, and by the time they have something serious enough to satisfy the rule, it is too late for the child.