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when would you call CPS? - Page 7

post #121 of 251
Quote:
Originally Posted by chinaKat View Post
My friend's four year old son once ran through the grocery store yelling "Don't beat me mama! Don't beat me!"

That's because she was using "playful parenting" and had challenged him to a *race* to the end of the grocery aisle.

She didn't shop in that store for months after that... even now she's terrified that the people there think she's a child abuser...
See, I would call that paranoid. Was the kid crying and terrified? Or was he shrieking and happy? Anyone could tell by context what he meant. And so what? She could totally explain the situation.

BSD, I don't think you can call CPS on strangers too easily. I remember once on MDC a woman posted that she'd called 911 after hearing a father take his son into the bathroom and spank him severely, and the parents calling the boys horrible, horrible names throughout dinner, and threatened them some more with more violence. The police didn't end up doing anything at ALL, and the violent parents I think then threatened violence upon the caller. GOOD TIMES FAMILY.

That said, I do something. Usually by trying to distract - i.e. giving some help, talking about how hard it is to raise kids, making something up about my kid being just awful until I read this book by Dr. Sears...boy it helped so much. I also usually carry stickers around to give out to crying kids who need some distraction.

heh heh. But if a person is too shy, they can do a lot by just stopping and watching. Being a pair of eyes to help a parent remember that people care about how kids are treated.
post #122 of 251
Quote:
Originally Posted by flyingspaghettimama View Post
Right, right. So we can all keep saying that CPS is the big nasty and therefore, we can feel good about turning blind eye to abusive situations? I guess nobody has any better ideas? I'm serious. If people have a great alternative or other things they'd do if they see someone calling their kids effing brats, get in the effing car?
Yeah - I have a great alternative. Butt out, because you have no clue what's going on, or how that person usually parents. There were several times that my public behaviour would have apparently earned me the attentions of CPS were it witnessed by people here. DS1 was a healthy, happy little boy. There was just a period when our family was going through a lot of crap, and unfortunately, one of the places it sometimes spilled out was on ds1. Of course, if the underfunded and understaffed people at CPS weren't busy telling people to provide a list of all their friends and define what benefit those friendships have for the family, and asking people to define their career goals...maybe they'd have someone available when they get a call about a child who hasn't eaten in two weeks, or is showing up at ER with broken bones on a regular basis.

How about the little boy I saw forced out of bed in the middle of the night, by social workers and two policement with guns, because there was an unsubstantiated accusation of sexual abuse against his father, regarding his older brother? It was all okay, though - after forcing him to undergo a full physical (at the hands of a total stranger...apparently it's not sexual abuse if it's the state violating a child's body) and finding no evidence of sexual abuse against any of the kids, they let them go home. It only took a year. Of course, it was a given that my friend would lose his kids...he was "weird" and had "inappropriate" artwork in his home, and he was tried and convicted in the minds of the social workers as soon as they walked in. I was there, and I don't ever want someone that self-righteous, sanctimonious, biased and smarmy in my home...and I certainly don't want them here if they have the power to destroy my family and sexually abuse my children with no repercussions. Those people are scary - and at least one of them flat-out lied in court.

Quote:
Heffern, I am sorry you had a mean neighbor, they're usually the sort to report (along with family members) maliciously. But what ended up happening with CPS? Did they take your child away? Or did they say the allegations were unfounded and drop it? If someone makes allegations of neglect, they have to look into it - what if you weren't you, and you were a mom who was passed out on meth in the bedroom and didn't feed your kids all day? Does anyone acknowledge that this happens every day in America?
It happens every day in Canada, too. My friend lost his kids for a year, based on one accusation from a disgruntled family "friend". I have another friend who went for custody when his ex dropped the kids off while she was in rehab - their behaviour showed signs of abuse (the 1-year-old dropping to the floor in a fetal position with her hands over her head when he raised his voice, for example), and he realized they couldn't go back. When he talked to the social worker, he was told "oh, I'm glad - we were thinking we might have to apprehend them". Apparently, a spurious accusation of sexual abuse is sufficient to yank a child from a loving home...but documented evidence of ongoing physical abuse and severe neglect (grocery money all going to buy heroin) just warrants "investigation".
post #123 of 251
Quote:
Originally Posted by marybethorama View Post


I went through some rough times too. I've BTDT. Just like what you wrote.
I did have a visit from CPS. (Because my house was messy-I had been trying to declutter and there were many piles). It ended up being fine BUT it was very difficult.

I was also reported another time because my 4 yo wasn't toilet trained. In that case it was treated as a frivolous call. Even frivolous calls can be hurtful though if you're the recipient.

My parenting and housekeeping have now improved greatly. I no longer have the anger problems I did and I have learned to clean my house. Oh yeah, and the kid in question is potty trained :nana:
My housekeeping mostly sucks, but at least it's just clutter, not filth.

I solved my problems remarkably easily, really. I just said, "I don't love you anymore, and you need to move out" to my ex, and...VOILA! Who knew it really could be that easy? (I didn't bother getting into the stealing, drug abuse, crappy and minimal interaction with ds1, etc...we'd been fighting about all those long enough.)
post #124 of 251
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shakti A. View Post
For the record I have friends who parent in a fairly mainstream way who I think are good parents and friends who are about as AP as I consider myself to be who are absolute trainwrecks as parents. It's really not as simple, ime, as mainstream = bad and AP = good.
Yes, I agree.
post #125 of 251
Quote:
Originally Posted by Storm Bride View Post
Yeah - I have a great alternative. Butt out, because you have no clue what's going on, or how that person usually parents.
So, are there no circumstances that you feel warrant "butting in?" What if you overheard a man beating his wife? Or his dog? Or his child? Is the child less deserving of protection because I don't normally know how he parents?

"Well, he seems like a good husband normally, I'm sure she deserves that beating. I'm not one to judge. I'll just put my earplugs in like a good neighbor."

And when that kid ends up dead, then I guess I'll sleep soundly, because at least I never made any accusations that could cause him to be torn from his father's loving arms.

ETA:
1,500 children die every year from child abuse and neglect. That is just over 4 fatalities every day.
http://www.childhelp.org/resources/l...ter/statistics

The most dangerous time? The first year of life.

The website is great - they also have a toll-free anonymous hotline parents can call when they feel they're about to hurt their child or are stressed. How about having that number on hand next time you see a parent being violent to their child?
post #126 of 251
Quote:
Originally Posted by flyingspaghettimama View Post
ETA:
1,500 children die every year from child abuse and neglect. That is just over 4 fatalities every day.
Can you find the number of children who are abused, neglected or murdered in state custody every year?

...That number is shamefully higher than it is for those children living at home with their "abusive" parents.

Odd. For a system designed to protect the children, it ends up being the one that harms them the most.
post #127 of 251
Quote:
Originally Posted by flyingspaghettimama View Post
. The website is great - they also have a toll-free anonymous hotline parents can call when they feel they're about to hurt their child or are stressed. How about having that number on hand next time you see a parent being violent to their child?
I would be very hesitant about doing this. What if the parent felt confronted and their reaction was to become even more violent towards either the child or you?
post #128 of 251
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nature View Post
Can you find the number of children who are abused, neglected or murdered in state custody every year?

...That number is shamefully higher than it is for those children living at home with their "abusive" parents.

Odd. For a system designed to protect the children, it ends up being the one that harms them the most.
Sure, can you share those statistics, as you are familiar with them? I like how you put "abusive" in quotes. Like these kids' mom was just an unwitting sucker of the system? Neglect so bad that her daughter's skin was peeling off from an unchanged diaper? Not feeding, locking in the closet, beatings?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MissPlum View Post
I would be very hesitant about doing this. What if the parent felt confronted and their reaction was to become even more violent towards either the child or you?
Well, that's just the chance I take. I haven't had any bad reactions yet to offering help or sympathy for the job of parenting, while trying to defuse a situation. Stickers are magic.

I wouldn't just hand a number and say, "hey bad mama, you need this!" I'd start a conversation and talk about how hard it is sometimes, etc, and talk about how talking can help. I would like to make clear that this is if they are yelling or becoming more agitated. If I saw someone spanking, shaking, or being very violent to their child, I would probably call the police, just as I would if I saw two strangers fighting or a couple coming to blows.
post #129 of 251
While I wouldn't call in either situation, I just wanted to point out that it isn't your responsiblity to find a pattern of abuse or seek out the reasons, or understand the family situation. If you suspect abuse, you call. I'm a mandated reporter. I ask myself, do I suspect it? Yep, then call. Not really, then I don't. It is CPS's job to find out the details. Sometimes I call and say, "I don't know if this is reportable, but. . . " and sometimes they say, "That's not really reportable, thanks for calling," or they give me some guidelines or send me a pamphlet. As a teacher, I have called CPS about once a year for the past 7 years. In only one case was the child removed and that was a very extreme case. The rest were "investigated" and refered to counseling or parenting classes or nothing at all.
post #130 of 251
Quote:
Originally Posted by alegna View Post
So, you think nudity in a household always leads to sexual abuse?

odd....

-Angela
as I sit here typing nudely...

(Dear God! My kids have seen a tit!)
post #131 of 251
Quote:
Originally Posted by flyingspaghettimama View Post
Sure, can you share those statistics, as you are familiar with them? I like how you put "abusive" in quotes. Like these kids' mom was just an unwitting sucker of the system? Neglect so bad that her daughter's skin was peeling off from an unchanged diaper? Not feeding, locking in the closet, beatings?
Sure I can. National data on child abuse fatalities show that a child is twice as likely to die of abuse in foster care than in the general population. One study in Baltimore found the rate of substantiated child sexual abuse in foster care more than four times higher than the rate in general population. Another study in Indiana found three times more physical abuse and twice the rate of sexual abuse in foster homes than in the general population. Group homes the rate for physical abuse was 10 times more and more than 28 times the rate of sexual abuse as in the general population.

Investigating themselves is something the state really doesn't like to do. So abuse gets covered up, lied about, and hidden. Until another child dies because of it.

There are lots of different places to find statistics on this subject, and the numbers change a bit here and there. The one thing that doesn't change is, foster care is deadly dangerous. (and yes, there are good foster parents out there but sadly they are a minority.) Every study, including those done by the Federal government itself proves that children are abused and killed more in foster care than when they are kept with their parents.

Family preservation is what we need to strive for, because its what works. The family IS the most important unit, even those that are dysfunctional. There is no one here that is denying that abuse happens in homes. (and the word was put in quotes before because we were talking of the falsely accused earlier,... you know.. parents that others just think are liars or paranoid for no reason..) But people need to recognize and acknowledge that removing the children and tearing the family apart, EVEN IF there was abuse is not the best way. Keeping the family together and helping them should be the goal, and its not anymore. It doesn't have anything to do with families. CPS itself will say its not about families. (unless they're referencing their new pretty children they have to adopt out. THEN they mention family a lot.) Its all about the children. Protect the children. Save the children. Be there for the children. And in all of that saving, we throw them to the lions den by popping them in a situation that is guaranteed to be at least twice as dangerous as their home life ever was.
post #132 of 251
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nature View Post
Sure I can. National data on child abuse fatalities show that a child is twice as likely to die of abuse in foster care than in the general population. One study in Baltimore found the rate of substantiated child sexual abuse in foster care more than four times higher than the rate in general population. Another study in Indiana found three times more physical abuse and twice the rate of sexual abuse in foster homes than in the general population. Group homes the rate for physical abuse was 10 times more and more than 28 times the rate of sexual abuse as in the general population.

Investigating themselves is something the state really doesn't like to do. So abuse gets covered up, lied about, and hidden. Until another child dies because of it.

There are lots of different places to find statistics on this subject, and the numbers change a bit here and there. The one thing that doesn't change is, foster care is deadly dangerous. (and yes, there are good foster parents out there but sadly they are a minority.) Every study, including those done by the Federal government itself proves that children are abused and killed more in foster care than when they are kept with their parents.

Family preservation is what we need to strive for, because its what works. The family IS the most important unit, even those that are dysfunctional. There is no one here that is denying that abuse happens in homes. (and the word was put in quotes before because we were talking of the falsely accused earlier,... you know.. parents that others just think are liars or paranoid for no reason..) But people need to recognize and acknowledge that removing the children and tearing the family apart, EVEN IF there was abuse is not the best way. Keeping the family together and helping them should be the goal, and its not anymore. It doesn't have anything to do with families. CPS itself will say its not about families. (unless they're referencing their new pretty children they have to adopt out. THEN they mention family a lot.) Its all about the children. Protect the children. Save the children. Be there for the children. And in all of that saving, we throw them to the lions den by popping them in a situation that is guaranteed to be at least twice as dangerous as their home life ever was.

Thank you for that-I think I remember writing a paper on that one time? A long time ago perhaps? Anyway, because children are more likely to be abused and neglected when they are in the foster care system, it makes me very hesitant to call CPS, and when other solutions are possible, I employ those first. It is right that, yes some homes are dysfunctional, but if there was an agency that had the resources to at least help these families, not tear them apart, it would be of a great service to children. Some CPS branches DO have services that are directed at "Family Preservation", however in depth they are, I don't know, but I don't think it's anywhere near the degree that we need to be seeing.

The familial unit, and the stability of it is the most influential and important structure in a child's life. Tearing to apart, even when there are some questionable activities(and I am NOT talking about severe abuse here, or cases where the child is in danger of losing his/her life or is risking being beaten black and blue, or is being sexually abused) is proven over and over again to be very detremental to the both the child and the family, and can and most often does result in irreperable emotional scars. Just ask the mothers on here who have been falsely accused-some suffer from PTSD, others live in fear of the next knock on the door. Ideally, if a child HAS to be removed from the house, the best placement is with relatives on either side who have an emotional attachment to the child. Placing a child with strangers who have no emotional attachment to them is going to inevitably place them at risk for abuse, statistically.
post #133 of 251
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nature View Post

Family preservation is what we need to strive for, because its what works. The family IS the most important unit, even those that are dysfunctional. There is no one here that is denying that abuse happens in homes. (and the word was put in quotes before because we were talking of the falsely accused earlier,... you know.. parents that others just think are liars or paranoid for no reason..) But people need to recognize and acknowledge that removing the children and tearing the family apart, EVEN IF there was abuse is not the best way. Keeping the family together and helping them should be the goal, and its not anymore. It doesn't have anything to do with families. CPS itself will say its not about families. (unless they're referencing their new pretty children they have to adopt out. THEN they mention family a lot.) Its all about the children. Protect the children. Save the children. Be there for the children. And in all of that saving, we throw them to the lions den by popping them in a situation that is guaranteed to be at least twice as dangerous as their home life ever was.
So, it's better for a three year old girl to keep living with her sexually abusive father, in the name of family preservation? A mother who's selling her daughter on the Internet? Is that realling throwing them into the lion's den, to remove them from that home?

I don't know about where you live, but where I live, there's such an emphasis on family preservation that children are routinely returned home...and then killed a short time later. It happens at least once a month.

I know false allegations are HARD. But usually, it doesn't come to much, either, as we can see from the statistics and news reports. Children are not usually removed because of cosleeping or a dirty house.

But, whatever. I give up. Keep being so fearful that it will unfairly happen to YOU that you won't report true abuse you see, and thinking CPS is Teh Devil.
post #134 of 251
Quote:
Originally Posted by angelpie545 View Post
Thank you for that-I think I remember writing a paper on that one time? A long time ago perhaps? Anyway, because children are more likely to be abused and neglected when they are in the foster care system, it makes me very hesitant to call CPS, and when other solutions are possible, I employ those first. It is right that, yes some homes are dysfunctional, but if there was an agency that had the resources to at least help these families, not tear them apart, it would be of a great service to children. Some CPS branches DO have services that are directed at "Family Preservation", however in depth they are, I don't know, but I don't think it's anywhere near the degree that we need to be seeing.

The familial unit, and the stability of it is the most influential and important structure in a child's life. Tearing to apart, even when there are some questionable activities(and I am NOT talking about severe abuse here, or cases where the child is in danger of losing his/her life or is risking being beaten black and blue, or is being sexually abused) is proven over and over again to be very detremental to the both the child and the family, and can and most often does result in irreperable emotional scars. Just ask the mothers on here who have been falsely accused-some suffer from PTSD, others live in fear of the next knock on the door. Ideally, if a child HAS to be removed from the house, the best placement is with relatives on either side who have an emotional attachment to the child. Placing a child with strangers who have no emotional attachment to them is going to inevitably place them at risk for abuse, statistically.
I pretty much agree with this. In most cases kids should be kept with family members either pparents, or other relatives, but I don't see what that has to do with calling CPS. CPS agrees with you, too.

I've called seven times and 6 times the child remained in the home and wasn't taken away from the parents for longer than the interview. In the seventh case, it was very extreme and many, many people had called. I call when I have a hunch because if there is just one call on a family, they just "check in" with them, which has even happened with my family, so I don't take it lightly. But, if several people have had a hunch, there might be something going on.

In several cases when I have called, they have not even taken a report. I encourage people to call if they suspect abuse and let CPS decide if it is a valid "reportable" concern. For example, one time I called because I knew a 9 year old who was left home to babysit his 12 month old brother for 8 hours daily in the summer. This particular 9 year old was very immature and not equipped for this, but they said it wasn't reportable unless there was more known danger and they sent me a pamphlet on babysitting guidlines. When you call, the don't immediatly make a report. First, they ask you to tell them the situation, then if it is reportable they start asking for the names and addresses of the people involved.

In many cases, I feel like they haven't done enough. I get a letter back a few weeks later saying that they found nothing which is crazy to me. Another example, a 12 year old girl whose mother had moved away with her boyfriend and left the daughter in the care of the daughters boyfriend who was 21. CPS told me that this boyfriend was actually the child's gaurdian. Ok, she's sleeping with her guardian! What kind of power dynamic is that? They said she seemed mature for her age.

So, in general, I believe that it is usually best for the child to remain with family. I call CPS when I suspect abuse.

I do find it odd that on TAO right now there is a thread that if you hear a man and a woman fighting and you suspect violence you have a moral obligation to call the police, but with children and parents we should butt out because we don't know the situation. I figure that whatever a parent is willing to do in the parking lot is 100% nicer/kinder/gentler than what is going on in the privacy of the home.
post #135 of 251
Quote:
Originally Posted by flyingspaghettimama View Post
So, it's better for a three year old girl to keep living with her sexually abusive father, in the name of family preservation? A mother who's selling her daughter on the Internet? Is that realling throwing them into the lion's den, to remove them from that home?

I don't know about where you live, but where I live, there's such an emphasis on family preservation that children are routinely returned home...and then killed a short time later. It happens at least once a month.

I know false allegations are HARD. But usually, it doesn't come to much, either, as we can see from the statistics and news reports. Children are not usually removed because of cosleeping or a dirty house.

But, whatever. I give up. Keep being so fearful that it will unfairly happen to YOU that you won't report true abuse you see, and thinking CPS is Teh Devil.
I am not fearful. I am cautious. Because it has happened to me. Its not some "what if" in my mind. Its been a reality.

I'm not against CPS. I'm against what it has become. There are no checks and balances in place to protect the children properly or the family. They are given absolute authority with no repercussions whatsoever for mistakes that are made. Make child abuse and neglect a criminal charge, and that would be a good step in the right direction. That way, families would have the right to a fair trial with a jury instead of what they have now where corruption and bias run rampant. Innocent until proven guilty instead of the way things are run now, ... guilty until proven innocent.

I already stated earlier in this thread that if I saw or knew about clear child abuse or neglect I would call the police. I don't turn a blind eye to what I see around me. I also don't keep CPS on speed dial to call every time I see someone yell at their child, or do something that I personally wouldn't do as a parent. I take the choice to call the authorities very seriously. I don't see it as a "Oh well, I'll call and they can figure out if abuse is really happening or not.. No harm can come from it anyway if there is no abuse." I'm sorry, but I've seen first hand and many other times from others that its simply not that cut and dry.

I much prefer to try to help the person out myself. Befriend them. Talk to them. Offer to help with babysitting, laundry, etc... Of course there are things that are just too far out there to fix. Sexual abuse being one of them. There is nothing I can personally do to fix that, so I would urge them to contact the authorities and get their child into therapy. I would talk to them about it first. Then, if they refused... I would call someone. Because I do believe that children need to be protected and helped when clearly there is abuse or neglect going on. And unfortunately CPS is the only system we have in place, as messed up as it is.
post #136 of 251
FSM, I really think it is unfair of you to say that those of us who wouldn't call the authorities about a CIO situation or the mom swearing at her kids would turn a blind eye to more serious and chronic forms of abuse. For one thing, that insinuation just plain isn't true.
post #137 of 251
I had a friend who was neglecting her children. They had dental issues that were not being properly treated (both toddlers needed surgery), they were malnourished, they were not being supervised properly...to the point that they were getting injured. The house was filthy messy, and it was dangerous for kids. This was a CD, Anti Vax, Anti Circ, Breastfeeding, vegetarian crunchy mama. She is truly a great person, just not a very good mom unfortunately. There were times when I actually got to the point where I felt like calling CPS, but I had to keep reminding myself that the kids were better off in their current situation bc they were not being beaten or starved, and at least they were with parents who did love them.

I tried to be supportive...there were about 5 mamas including myself and we all tried to help her in any way that we could. WE would watch her kids, help her clean and organize, listen, offer support, even try to talk some sense into her husband. We helped and supported her for about 1 1/2 years.
But things just kept getting worse...they house was dirtier, the police were showing up at the house because the 3 year old was getting out and playing in the street or neighbors yards for long periods of time without anyone noticing that he was gone. The kids finally got the much needed dental treatment, but that was the only improvement. I started witnessing verbal and mild physical abuse directed at the kids from my friend. I felt helpless and I really wished that there was someone that I could call that would help her and not just come in and judge her, force her to jump through hoops with the threat of losing her kids hanging over her head. I even talked it over with friends about whether or not to call CPS. I really love these kids and hated to see them going through this. I eventually just had to remove myself from the friendship. It is really sad. I still see the kids when there dad has them, and things seem to be a little better for them bc the parents are now separated, but it is heart wrenching!!
But I am really glad that I didn't call CPS. It may have worked out if I had...maybe they would have helped out with some classes and left the kids at home. But maybe they would have traumatized my friend's family in the process of "Helping" them.

The only time that CPS should be called is when the circumstances are very extreme. Sever beating, starvation, forced labor, sexual abuse etc

Maybe someday there will be a better solution. Until there is, though, we have to reach out to those who we see crossing the line into child abuse. Most people who are doing that were raised in an even worse situation and maybe don't even understand that it can be different. I remember seeing nice families on sitcoms when I was growing up in an abusive home, and I really thought it was the polar opposite of what families were really like. I didn't understand there was really a possibility to live in a family without violence and abuse.
I was lucky and I learned that there is another way, but many people haven't yet.

There are so many good ideas in this thread for things that we can do to support these parents. It would almost be nice to have a separate thread that was alternatives to calling CPS. So that other people who are thinking about calling might change their mind if the situation doesn't warrant it.
post #138 of 251
Quote:
Originally Posted by dubfam View Post
I had a friend who was neglecting her children. They had dental issues that were not being properly treated (both toddlers needed surgery), they were malnourished, they were not being supervised properly...to the point that they were getting injured. The house was filthy messy, and it was dangerous for kids. This was a CD, Anti Vax, Anti Circ, Breastfeeding, vegetarian crunchy mama. She is truly a great person, just not a very good mom unfortunately. There were times when I actually got to the point where I felt like calling CPS, but I had to keep reminding myself that the kids were better off in their current situation bc they were not being beaten or starved, and at least they were with parents who did love them.

I tried to be supportive...there were about 5 mamas including myself and we all tried to help her in any way that we could. WE would watch her kids, help her clean and organize, listen, offer support, even try to talk some sense into her husband. We helped and supported her for about 1 1/2 years.
But things just kept getting worse...they house was dirtier, the police were showing up at the house because the 3 year old was getting out and playing in the street or neighbors yards for long periods of time without anyone noticing that he was gone. The kids finally got the much needed dental treatment, but that was the only improvement. I started witnessing verbal and mild physical abuse directed at the kids from my friend. I felt helpless and I really wished that there was someone that I could call that would help her and not just come in and judge her, force her to jump through hoops with the threat of losing her kids hanging over her head. I even talked it over with friends about whether or not to call CPS. I really love these kids and hated to see them going through this. I eventually just had to remove myself from the friendship. It is really sad. I still see the kids when there dad has them, and things seem to be a little better for them bc the parents are now separated, but it is heart wrenching!!
But I am really glad that I didn't call CPS. It may have worked out if I had...maybe they would have helped out with some classes and left the kids at home. But maybe they would have traumatized my friend's family in the process of "Helping" them.

The only time that CPS should be called is when the circumstances are very extreme. Sever beating, starvation, forced labor, sexual abuse etc
I guess we just have different points of view, because I would definitely have called CPS.
post #139 of 251
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nature View Post
Can you find the number of children who are abused, neglected or murdered in state custody every year?

...That number is shamefully higher than it is for those children living at home with their "abusive" parents.

Odd. For a system designed to protect the children, it ends up being the one that harms them the most.
Yes, I can find part of that number. I think a previous poster cited from this:
http://www.nccpr.org/newissues/1.html#1


The report said:
Quote:
National data on child abuse fatalities show that a child is nearly twice as likely to die of abuse in foster care as in the general population.
Here's the fine print: About 0.73 percent of American children are in foster care, but 1.22 percent of child abuse fatalities are in foster care. U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services, Administration on Children, Youth and Families. Child Maltreatment 2002 (Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 2001). See chart in Chapter Four.

I've done a small amount of digging here:
http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/cb/pubs/cwo03/index.htm
and have been unable to tease out anything about the 1.22% who were abuse fatalities while in foster care - who was the offender? The foster parent or the abuser on visitation, or some other circumstance? This number being in foster care does not mean that the offender was the foster parent.

I think everyone should spend some time looking at the above link and if you're in the US look up the bar charts on state by state performance. The variance is immense. Some states seem reasonable, some are awful.

In Chapter II, there's this:
Quote:
Percent of children in foster care who were victims of maltreatment by a foster parent or facility staff member (N=41 States) average 0.44%.
The thing that I think is scary is that online communities and global media are making issues seem larger quantitatively than they are. We hear so much about abuses by the child welfare system, happening all over the place, that we inflate the degree of the problem in our own community. I am in no way arguing that some child welfare systems don't have HUGE problems, or that the experiences people have shared are untrue. But I can't get my head around the idea that one would choose to ignore clear, blatant neglect or abuse because they fear what might happen in foster care or getting CPS involved (and these two things are not synonymous - it is hugely expensive to take children into care, and cost-cutting governments are putting active pressure to reduce the number of kids in care - never mind that it's considered good practice to support families rather than break them apart wherever possible).
post #140 of 251
I have not read all 7 pages of this thread, but would like to point one thing out in case it hasn't been covered already.

There are terrible cases of genuine abuse going on in the US all the time, and we all know caseworkers are overloaded and can't tend even the cases already assigned to them.

With that in mind, every time someone calls and says "I saw this woman cussing out her kids in a parking lot, here's the license number," they are taking valuable time and resources away from legitimate, dangerous cases of abuse. It's another piece of paper that has to be sorted through, another phone call that needs to be returned.

I would absolutely not call CPS under either of those circumstances. Partly because equating it with "abuse" and reporting it as such comes very close to my understanding of "bearing false witness against your neighbor." Partly because it would be on my soul if my nosiness caused some actual beaten, neglected, or sexually abused child to be overlooked for services, or even have to wait one more day for them, because CPS was investigating my "that mom used the f-word" complaint. No way.

-Rebecca
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