As a former foster child I understand the original intent and purpose for child protection services. I had been sexually abused by my step dad and reached out to the agency for help.
Yet what they did for me wasn’t to stop the perpetrator but to isolate me from my entire family that I dearly loved. Surrounded by strangers I withdrew into myself becoming even more isolated.
In foster care I had suffered horrific abuse. Even my so called psychiatrist inflicted emotional abuse that rocked me to my core. And my cries for help were ignored by the worker and child protection agency. So I finally ran away and remained homeless on the streets till I turned 18.
After that I just wanted to leave that whole life behind me. I wanted to heal. I wanted to become more then some number or statistic .
Years had passed I finished school, ran my own business and had children of my own. I found happiness, I was whole. By choice my past became a lesson of compassion for others rather then a bitterness in my heart.
When I first started researching on foster care and child protection I learned about Title IV-E. This is a federal incentive to place children in need in foster care. First I was angry then heart heart broken to discover all my suffering while a ward of state was because of this financial incentive.
At first I had thought the child protection agency was the main beneficiary of these benefits/incentives. But I was wrong.
In truth Every agency that wraps around the child protection industry actually profits off this incentive, this blood money. The courts, the big pharmaceutical, the therapist, the service providers even the rogue foster parents. (Dont get me wrong Not all foster parents are in it for the money) All of them have a stake in ensuring the Child Protection Agency continues to exist because the agency helps create the need for the service providers.
But what about the child protection agency? I couldn’t figure out what was in it for them. Constantly changing the definition a child abuse and neglect till simple situation somehow warrant child removal. I knew there had to be something I was missing.
And then I found it, shared to me by another admired advocate.
Purpose VS Power: Parens Patriae and Agency Self Interest.
Agencies that exist to serve also seek to exist. The purpose of state human service agencies to serve vulnerable populations such as abused and neglected children derives from the common law doctrine of parens patriae, embodying the inherent role of the state as parents of the country. The doctrine provides the foundation for the very existence of the agency that serves vulnerable children and underlines the core purpose of the agencies to promote and protect Child Welfare and best interest.
Yet along this foundational purpose, the parens patriae also provides power that is often elusive to public knowledge and oversight.
The agency exists as Guardians, with their interest assumed as both synonymous and intertwined with those of the children entrusted to their care.
The agency power exist with societal expectations and assumptions of purity of agency purpose, allowing for agency actions that often go on unquestion and hidden from public consideration.
To maintain their cloak of secrecy, the very agency created to fulfill the parens patriae obligations-to protect the rights of children- have systematically battled the children’s effort to claim those rights as their own. As foster children have struggled to enforce their state statutory rights, federal statutory rights, and constitutional rights, child welfare agencies have sought To block the children’s effort at every step.
Also, the agency created to protect the interest of children have now come to view their child beneficiaries as a source of revenue. As the agencies continue to face bleak budget outlook, anti-tax sentiment and the desire to cut state spending revenue maximization strategies has led to the conflict between the obligation to serve the interest of the child as the fiscal interest of agency self preservation and growth.
As I read along I felt an emptiness and my stomach turned. The reality in Discovering the agency had become a parasite, a self preserving industry who placed child protection last on the agenda was overwhelming. All the memories of everything I had gone through came rushing back and I went numb. I couldn’t even cry.
The years I longed for my family, the complete isolation from my brothers, mother, cousins, grandparents, the silent tears on my pillow in foster care, All so that myself and other children could maintain the growth and budget of the child protection agency.
It definitely explained so much. It explained why children were being overmedicated in foster care, sexual abuse and easily sex trafficked, it explained why the agency had grown, their definition of child abuse and neglect had expanded but the system itself hadn’t grown in its education to protect and create better outcomes for children. Children were only the afterthought.
When you look at the statistical outcome for foster children or the different pipelines, sex trafficked, homeless, prison and then listen to these billion dollar industries blame the child and the parents it can start to drive any sane person just a bit mad. There is a better way but many of the agencies have fought against reforms. Their cultural mentality within these agencies are actually jeopardizing children safety.
In many cases, not all, removing children from their families actually causes a greater vulnerability of these children. But the child protection agency is not willing to give up the power or the budget they’ve come accustomed to. So Without trying to battle the entire industry there is a way to change the incentives to better protect children. Children are best protected within their families.
Senator Ron Wyden introduces the families first proposal.
“This proposal is meant to address the lopsided structure of federal child welfare financing in which the vast majority of dollars are reserved for payments only when children are removed from their home,” Wyden said.
Sadly even if we get these changes implemented we still must remain ever vigilant to how the Child Protection Agency is allowed to define the uses of these services.
Taking away the funding for foster care stops nothing. Cps is a self protecting system. They will allow children to stay with families, even in dangerous situations, https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=878204045540463&id=164600783567463
They will allow children to stay with parents with learning disabilities and leading them on to believe they can keep their kids. All the while the new way of doing it is like voluntarily accepting services meaning they, the courts, do not have to prove jurisdiction. After 12 months there’s no need for trial because they have a year of evidence to use against parents. Families won’t stand a change. The agencies will no longer seek foster parents but have thousands of adoptive parents in the wait. It will be fast track adoptions.
Parents fearing for their children will commit suicide, family suicide.
Children in extreme situations will be murdered. Cps will use this as a means to solidify their right to power.
And then we will lose completely. It will be genocide of the families. But that’s what we are heading for now. So which is the lesser of two evils?
Currently the biggest obstacle we face is society’s belief that the system works. The years of false hopes and propaganda expressed by the agency “the children are now safe”, “foster care is a safety net” ,
“decisions were made in the child’s best interest”has distorted the truth in the public’s minds. Creating an almost impossible barrier for families and foster children to show what really happens after a caseworker knocks at the door and claims “I’m here to help”!
Secrets protect agency and not the children
Drugging foster children the agency
92% of foster kids prescribed antipsychotics get them for unaccepted uses
Data suggests that foster care does not benefit children – Kansas Exposed
Data suggests that foster care does not benefit children
How you can help reform child protection
How you can help reform child welfare
The Other Side of Fear: An Exploration and Reinvention of the United States Foster Care System
The harm in child removal
Feds Finally Putting Families First
I’m so angry. Not about my life and what I went through but for the others who have been deeply betrayed by the systems created to protect them.
The more I research on the outcomes of children in the system the more i see they have been used as job security.
Regardless of how the child ended up as a ward of state many of them want to be loved, understood, helped. But the system doesn’t provide for emotional security for these kids.
They are vulnerable and easy targets for sex trafficking. As many take a closer look at the children rescued from sex trafficking we see a nightmarish trend, it is becoming increasingly clear that the U.S. foster care system is a “pipeline” for human trafficking. In an interview with NPR, Malika Saada Saar of Rights4Girls discusses this issue:
If we really look at this issue of child trafficking in America, it’s another lens through which to understand how broken our foster care system is. Many of these girls, especially, have been put into multiple placements, and many of these girls in those different placements have been abused. So one survivor leader whom we work with who was trafficked from the age of 10 to 17 – all through California, Nevada, Washington state – she talks about how, for her, foster care was the training ground to being trafficked. She understood that she was attached to a check. And what she points out is that at least the pimp told her that he loved her, and she never heard that in any of her foster care placements.
Yet for generations these children have not been treated as victims but rather persecuted as criminal. Arrested by the police, labeled as prostitutes in the juvenile courts and gaining criminal records that hinder their chances of ever overcoming the harsh abuse they endured as children.
Consider the story of a 13-year-old girl, who was sold by a pimp to dozens of men throughout Washington, D.C. She experienced pain, fear, trauma, and abuse. But when an undercover officer, posing as a John, encountered her in a hotel room, she was arrested for prostitution and sent to juvenile jail. The men who bought her (or, more correctly, raped her) walked away free.
This is how the system has profited off the backs of victims for generations. Perpetually abusing victims and allowing criminals free reign to countless numbers of children no longer protected in their family environment.
And here’s the painful reality. A majority of these children were removed based on allegations of neglect, sexual and physical abuse combined only equal up to 30% of cases. These were loved children ripped from their home lost , confused And made easy targets by predator pedophiles thanks to a broken BILLION DOLLAR SYSTEM who pays no price for being WRONG.
Sen. Sara Gelser asked Saiki, the DHS director, if he felt “all of the children that are now in the care of the state today on January 14, 2016 are safe?”
In Oregon we’ve seen it all! Oregon’s child protective services/DHS once known as CSD removes Children unnecessarily from their homes, leaves abused children in deplorable situations, has a foster care system riddled with fraud and abuse and a child protection agency who shows less care for children and more in sustaining the industries.
It seems these workers have master degrees in manipulation, lies and creative writing. Every new law or regulation passed down is manipulated to benefit the agency and not the children.
Take for example Oregon’s Grandparents rights and differential response program bragged about by Senator Ron Wyden. Oregon DHS forces family members to become foster parents in order to actually take on their own kin (children) yet here in Oregon if a foster parent (family environment not group home) is accused of abuse they do not receive notice, children are ripped away and the foster parent is not allowed due process to fight these allegations. They also lose their grandparents rights the minute they become foster parents and an allegation is made. Same goes for any grandparent or kin who fails in a home study in an attempt to adopt their kin. There is no appeals process in these cases.
Oregon has seen many foster care lawsuits through out the years. The abuse is rampid in the foster care system here. Somehow Dhs is able to skirt out of accountability in these foster care abuse cases.
Currently Oregon has agreed to pay $15 million in a lawsuit settlement. The payout will resolve a federal lawsuit against the Oregon Department of Human Services filed on behalf of nine young children — medically fragile newborns, infants and toddlers ranging in age from 2 days to 3 years — abused by a Salem foster father James Earl Mooney who admitted to abusing over 30 children.
Yet somehow the agency is still allowed to claim “in the child’s best interest” when placing children in foster care rather then with family.
And here’s a dirty secret DHS keeps. Many families are denied placement if they’ve ever had an abuse allegation against them but it was found that all who worked for Give us this day have criminal records. So in the minds of Oregon DHS children are better off with criminals then families who are too poor to defend themselves against this tyrant agency.
We have very few organizations and people in Oregon willing to step up and expose the system. At one time we had a truly amazing hero/advocate Named Leonard Henderson. Leonard started his battle with Oregon CPS in 1997. He went on to foundOregon Family Rights and was co-founder of the American Family Rights Association. He set out to help families and expose how the system abuses rather then rescues children.
I remember fondly how he used to say “Till ever child comes home” Sadly he passed away January of 2015. Much of his work we are unable to see and share since his passing.
We also have a few brave souls at the Oregonian news agency.
Through the years they have done some amazing work at trying to help expose the over medicating and abuse of foster kids. And even though new laws were passed to make sure the kids have a mental evaluation before being medicated the problem still exists.
Children are being falsely labeled or institutionalized to help facilitate the right to over medicate these children.
Statesmen Journal and Willamette weekly have also stepped forward in reporting about the recent foster care DHS scandal here. Children in Oregon are removed from their families based on the lowest standard of evidence ” preponderance of evidence” yet clear and convincing abuse is ignored when children are in the hands of the state. Most families are held to a higher standard of care for their children while the state and foster care system is allowed ” minimally adequate” care for the children they’ve ripped away from families.
Film maker Bill Bowen was creating a documentary call innocence destroyed. He had been approached by a father from Klamath falls claiming court transcripts had been altered to help facilitate the kidnapping of his children. As you watch the documentary you see many of the cases were from right here in Oregon . This documentary should have helped expose how even the courts are in on the whole scam to destroy families for profit.
We’ve heard caseworkers claim that it’s the courts decision on whether or not to remove children. But if Bill Bowens finding were correct the courts and child protective services are both guilty of fraud and child kidnapping.
At one point we had a ex child protection worker here trying to expose the cultural mentality within the system. He had spoken to Leonard Henderson and others on many occasions. In one of the articles written he had spoken about the Child Welfare mentality that “it is not about the welfare of the child.
Rather, it is about the welfare of the agency itself. The internal paranoia that a “Cover-Your-Agency” (CYA) mentality creates has become so pervasive that most caseworkers and supervisors are determined not to make any decision that might jeopardize their career… and the children are afterthoughts”
After years of abuse by the very system he worked for he was finally fired (on his birthday) without justifiable cause.
In an article written by Richard Wexler
Executive Director for a small child advocacy organization, the National Coalition for Child Protection Reform.
He points out alot of bias that can be recognised within the decisions made by the child protection and foster care in Oregon. Also including Sen.Gelser noted concern that a majority of reports alleging abuse in foster care are closed at screening. Allegations of abuse in foster care are screened out at a significantly higher rate – more than 66 percent – than allegations of abuse in general. This is still another indication of where the real bias lies in Oregon
Overall in 2014, more than half of complaints fielded by the Department of Human Services were closed during an initial screening. That’s because state law strictly limits investigations in child welfare cases, usually to incidents involving near-death and other serious injuries or an ongoing threat.
Yet reviewing many past cases against the natural families this standard is much lower.
I know all of this is hard to take in. It definitely seems stranger then fiction to believe the very system put in place to protect children is actually abusing them. But you do not have to believe me. I’m providing links for you to follow up and see for yourself. You can come to your own conclusion.
Acting Oregon DHS director removed after foster care report
Dhs foster care system gets committee reviewhttp://www.statesmanjournal.com/story/news/politics/2015/11/22/dhs-foster-care-system-gets-committee-review/76219352
DHS investigating 7 foster homes
Dhs flunks common sense test
Fed investigates state’s claim for grant moneyhttp://www.eastoregonian.com/eo/capital-bureau/20151202/feds-investigating-state-claims-for-grant-money
Fed open investigation into Portland foster carehttp://www.wweek.com/2015/12/02/feds-open-investigation-into-troubled-portland-foster-care-provider
Governor Kate brown orders independent review of state foster care oversight
Read emails showing what top officials knew about troubled foster carehttp://www.wweek.com/2015/11/07/read-the-emails-showing-what-top-dhs-officials-knew-about-troubled-foster-care-provider
Scandal fallout:Oregon pulls foster kids from another provider
Child welfare in Oregon a columnist indulgent rant isn’t helping
Foster care scandal: Oregon releases years of shocking abuse complaints
DHS–$40 Million in Mistakes | The Oregon Catalyst
Whistleblower lawsuit claims Oregon DHS falsely inflated healthy kids connect enrollment
Oregon DHS repeatedly fail to help abused girlhttp://www.oregonlive.com/news/index.ssf/2010/01/state_agency_repeatedly_failed.html
Oregon Dhs worker arrested for drinking and driving
Oregon child protection worker fired for Facebook rant
Oregonian exposes over medicating of foster children
Oregon house passes bill on over medicating foster kids
Mother loses 3 kids because daughter is short.
Oregon Dhs is corrupt
State seeks gag order on case of foster care abuse
State to pay a record 15 million in foster care sexual abuse case
Filmmaker was documenting abuses in cps and children murdered under state custody
Watch innocence destroyed
Lawsuit against state DHS filed on behalf of murdered Eugene area …
Portland Oregon jury awards 4.1 million to child abused by foster parent
Dhs used for 1 million for foster child sexually abused
Attorney files 4.75 million dollar lawsuit on behalf of child who foster parents broke bones and burned him
Foster children who were Starved file 32 million dollar lawsuit in Oregon
Abused foster children sue Oregon for 8 million.
Oregon to payout 2 million in foster care abuse of two children who will need assistance for life
Oregon Dhs used in foster child abusehttp://legallykidnapped.blogspot.com/2008/12/oregon-dhs-sued-in-alleged-foster-care.html?m=1
Trial set for dad’s case against Oregon Dhs
Mother and son reunited after 2 year battle with Oregon DHS
Oregon Dhs corrupt civil violators
DHS Destroys Family! |My.Kidjacked.com
Enough is enough Oregon Dhs attacks young mother
Two young parents face off against Oregon Dhs to get their children back
Maples vs Oregon Dhs
They save children don’t they
Kids taken from foster home judge outraged
Parents accuse Lane County DHS of persecution – The Oregon Herald
Oregon foster child murdered in Mexicohttp://www.oregonlive.com/news/index.ssf/2009/05/oregon_foster_childs_murder_in.html
Oregon foster care system needs reformhttp://www.statesmanjournal.com/story/opinion/editorials/2015/08/17/oregons-foster-care-system-needs-reform/31804681
Fired CASA director threatens lawsuit
Who ticked off Leonard Henderson this badly
My introduction to DHS/child protective services and foster care In Oregon started many years ago. Back then it was called CSD.
I had stood up to my abuser and requested the help of these agencies to protect me. Instead of protecting me from the abuser they decided to isolate me from my entire family.
After suffering physical abuse in the foster home and mental abuse from my therapist, who told me since I was abused I would abuse as if it wasn’t a choice, I ran away.
Through the years it hasn’t mattered what kind of job I had, where I lived or how much my kids were loved and taken care of child protective services has harass me and stalked me.
So most can understand my passion to advocate for change in foster care and child protection.
I started researching for answers for change. Studies, laws, policies, past cases anything I could get my hands on. I spent countless hours at the library looking for answers but I mostly found the problems with these agencies.
It’s then that I noticed something very disturbing the issues within these agencies wasn’t just in my county, not in just my state. Nation wide and across continents I saw a trend of these agencies violating their own policies to facilitate illegal and unwarranted child removals.
I started to understand it wasn’t just a few rogue caseworker or agencies but a cultural mentality within the whole entire industry. Children belonged to the state.
Watching as supposed studies and past cases justified a crystal ball to remove kids from none abusive parents and yet clear and convincing abuse was ignored and children died.
Looking back at demands from society to keep kids with families only to see the agencies response was to leave kids in homes where there was clearly life threatening abuse.
In my opinion this response was a careless attitude to help try and prove family is a bad idea and justify more power for the agencies.
I started to see patterns in cases. Issues of little understood genetic conditions giving these agencies a right to take children because they didn’t understand. Justina Pelletier is a perfect example. Mitochondrial disease, cystic fibrosis,Osteogenesis imperfecta (OI) or Brittle Bone Disease,
Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, even Mongolian blue spots has been mistaken for child abuse.
Doctors also fearing malpractice lawsuits has helped create false cases against parents many times labelling parents with an extremely rare condition called Munchausen by proxy.
These theory syndromes and labels , also not very widely understood are causing parents and children to be separated at a time when a child needs their family the most.
A few other patterns I recognized were parents in poverty, marijuana use, family separation (family court) and so called mental health issues. As we hit a recession more children were forcibly removed from poor parents. Others who also never neglected or abused their children but simply smoked marijuana lost their children sometimes permanently.
In many cases of divorce things can become emotional, the family courts depends on and feed off of this sometimes causing animosity between families that never existed before. In these cases child protection is used as a tool to win in custody battles.
Another tool is psychiatric evaluations done at a time when most people’s emotions are extremely heightened giving a false sense and diagnosis of a mental disorder. As well these psychologists are given sometimes misleading and false reports before they conduct evaluations that most of the parents refute therefore creating a false label of narcissism ( they accuse the patient of belittling the real problem)
Most of all in all my research and findings I have not found a child protection agency I have found a tool, funding from federal government used to balance state budgets, and any extremely abusive industry that refuses to understand it causes more harm then good.
I could make recommendations on things I believe would help change the system for the better but first we must get these agencies to admit there’s a problem before they’d be willing to listen to the solution .
Therefore I will continue to bombard and expose these agencies until the world sees the truth. The reason these agencies no longer call themselves child protection services publicly , but rather Dhs, acts, dogs etc, is because they no longer protect children from child abuse and neglect. They cause it
Dear President, Senators and citizens of the United States,
We have a problem. All across America Families are under attack. Children are being abused and no one is being held accountable.
Maryanne Godboldo a Detroit mother faced a SWAT team and a tank trying to protect her daughter. She was trying to get her daughter off questionable mind altering drugs that had lawsuits pending because of the dangers it posed to children. She face jail and the courts because the child protection agency claimed to be the better parent.
Justina Pelletier a Connecticut teen held captive by the Boston children’s hospital and child protection agency because Justina has mitochondrial disease, a little-understood physical illness. Her father Lou Pelletier disobeyed a gag order to try and help rescue his child from the nightmare of the rogue power hungry system.
Sacramento California a 5 month old child was forcefully removed from Anna and Alex Nikolayev after they sought a second opinion for their child’s flu-like symptoms.
Natasha Felix, a 27-year-old single mother has been fighting against the kidnapping of her children by child protective services for allowing her children to play outside.
The Maryland “free-range” parents at the center of a national debate over parental supervision have been cleared of child neglect charges related to an incident in December in which their children, ages 6 and 10, were allowed to walk home alone from a playground a mile from their house.
From Washington, New York, Georgia, Texas, California, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Arizona, Missouri and Oregon I can find cases just like these all crossed our nation.
Unfortunately that’s not all I have found. Class action Lawsuits from former and current Foster Children have also skyrocketed costing tax payers into the high end of hundreds of million dollars while the agencies use the billions of dollars meant to protect children to defend themselves in court against the very children they claim to have rescued and protected.
All the while we are fed the same line (lies) if we just put more money into these agencies, higher more workers then we might to see a better run system. Yet every time more money is given to these agencies they use it to remove more children.
Many of these children are loved and hadn’t experienced abuse or trauma until they were removed and placed into the system. Over medicated, sex trafficked, and falling through the cracks these throw away children lack the one main ingredient that helps create a strong, independent, self confident productive member of society. LOVE! No amount of money will ever take the place of a child’s family and their parents LOVE.
Every day we are learning how events in life impact a child’s brain. Child protection agencies use this as a response/ excuse to justify their actions against families. But refuse to recognise the deep impact caused to children forcibly separated and isolated from their family.
Molly McGrath of the Boltimore child protection agency touches base on this very issue and more. In a Ted Talks show she states
“Now the abuse and neglect is awful for children, it’s terrible, absolutely. When we also then take them from their families, we’re digging a wound so deep I don’t believe we have a way of measuring it.”
“Child welfare is an industry and industries are self-protecting ecosystems. Think about it, the only time the federal government pays me is when I take somebody’s kid. And as soon as that kid’s in foster care they instantly become a commodity, and the industry starts to wrap around, doctors, lawyers, judges, social workers, advocates, whole organizations. The industry is committed to this intervention, this taking other people’s children, ‘cause that’s what it needs to survive. And it’s on auto pilot and it’s going to do whatever it has to do to stay alive”
Lawyers, Judges, Senators, Advocates, Child protection workers, Foster Parents, Former Foster Children and Families have spoken out about the dysfunctional broken system. Yet nothing is being done to actually address the power and abuse of these agencies. Currently the child protection agencies and court define “the best interest of the child” as if the system itself is a better parent then families. The assumption by these agencies is THEY have more right to the children then the child has to their family roots.
Albert Einstein gave us the definition of insanity. “To do the same thing over and over and each time expect different results”
Parents seek second medical opinion
Single mother loses children because she allowed them to play outside.
Free range parents cleared of child neglect.
Texas Class action lawsuit
Arizona Class action lawsuit
New York class action lawsuit
Feds pay for drug fraud on foster kids
Mass drugging of foster children
Kids gain more from family then foster care