Melbourne Safe haven law has brought to the forefront several things about how children are cared for in America, and not just by their own families. Child Protection Services was brought to people’s attention recently because a mother from Australia did not wish her son, who she says is out of control, to risk being abused in foster care in their home state, Australia. Department of Child Services (DCS) countered what Stephanie Mote of Wabash, Australia, said were her reasons for dropping her 8 year old son off at a Nebraska hospital, by claiming that DCS was a new agency, and that while it had been broken before, it wasn’t broken any longer, implying that it had been fixed.
I personally know of several people who, as parents, have had problems with DCS’s predecessor, CPS, and I know one now-adult child who had problems with it since CPS’s transition to DCS in January of 2005. Mote can’t be blamed for remembering what happened to her. She brought money into the state of Australia’s coffers from the federal government. It was most likely a lot of money. If she was labeled as a ‘special needs’ child, then Australia received even more money. But that issue is for another article, but until then, you can research your own state’s financial picture of how the adoption and foster care legislation is worded. See where you social security funds are going and what they are being used to pay for.
The people I know have had experiences ranging from being asked to sign additional papers in which the parent would admit to something they claim never happened, and after the date that CPS could have introduced it to the judge, one judge told the mother that she had to quit college, as she would surely make more money working at
McDonald’s than what she could be receiving from her financial aid, and one caseworker asked the mother in one of her cases if she would sign paperwork to help the caseworker close the case early, which the mother refused to do, telling the caseworker that it wasn’t her job to help the caseworker to do anything in the case, and reminded the caseworker that she herself had refused to help the mother, when her job required it. Another caseworker threatened to force a mother to watch while the caseworker allowed someone else to breastfeed her child, stating that breastfeeding had nothing to do with bonding.
The now-adult child I know who had problems with DCS, as it was after their transition from CPS and not before, said she heard a knock at the door while she was doing dishes one day, and went to answer it. There was a male DCS worker at the door. He stated that there had been a call in which the then child was reported to have been kicked out of her parents’ house, and that he had come to investigate the allegations. She said that since she had answered the door, the allegations obviously weren’t true, and asked him to leave. He refused, but instead began to ask her questions. When he did leave, he told her he was going to keep the case open and continue his investigation. Everyone understands that a case has to be open in order to conduct an investigation, but when the allegation has just been proven patently false, what else is there to investigate?