On the flip side, when a child has been terribly abused and removed from the home, they'd rather make sure the child never develops a bond with a foster parent, so move them around to keep them foundationless until they're put back with the abusers. For a kid stuck in their system, it is a no-win situation. :mad:
If the FLDS wasn't "almost Christian", I bet you people would be singing a different song.
Children from FLDS compound praise Texas Baptist agency
You guys don't seem to believe what our Presbyterian minister and wife are saying, will Baptists do?
SAN ANGELO, Texas (ABP) -- Although Texas officials have taken some criticism for removing hundreds of children from a religious compound, the Baptist agency caring for them has earned praise from the most important people: the children themselves.
Baptist Child and Family Services, an agency affiliated with the Baptist General Convention of Texas, was charged with caring for hundreds of children removed from the Fundamentalist Latter-Day Saints compound near Eldorado, Texas, in April. They coordinated the children’s care in nearby San Angelo for three weeks, after which 75 moved to the BCFS Youth Ranch near Luling.
"You’re nice," a 6-year-old girl announced last week as Nanci Gibbons, the agency’s executive vice president, walked past her on the ranch play ground.
"Why, thank you," Gibbons replied, "but how do you know I’m nice?"
"Because your shirt says 'BCFS,'" the girl answered, "and you know what BCFS stands for, don’t you?"
"Is it, 'Beef, Chicken, Fish and Sausage?'" Gibbons guessed, quoting the nickname many of the children had bestowed during their stay in San Angelo.
"Oh no," the girl said firmly. "It means, 'Best Care for Children.'"
"For the children to recognize that the folks in BCFS shirts are there to help and be nice is the best compliment we could get," BCFS chief executive Kevin Dinnin said. "Though there are significant differences, there is a common denominator between what we are doing with the FLDS children and what we did for Hurricane Katrina evacuees and victims of the Sri Lanka tsunami and what we're doing to help fight the international sex trafficking in Moldova -- we didn’t create the situation, but are working to meet the needs of those affected.
"Job one continues to be respecting each child’s dignity and making them as content as possible. Our overriding concern is to provide the children with safe, clean places to sleep, access to medical care, healthy food and people who care about them."
Placing 75 of the 462 children -- taken from the polygamist compound on suspicion of abuse -- at the Youth Ranch allowed Texas Child Protective Services to keep many sibling groups together.
It also kept BCFS in overdrive mode to staff the facility and activate support programs with local school districts. One of the mobile medical units was also stationed at the ranch.
In the move from San Angelo, one constant for children was the men and women in BCFS shirts.
"In San Angelo, our staff -- all wearing BCFS shirts -- quickly became known as the people you went to when you needed something, whether it was organic baby food or just someone to listen. And now the 75 children waiting to know what their future will be have promoted us several ranks, it seems."
The San Antonio-based agency was alerted April 4, just as the operation to remove the children from the compound got under way, to be ready to receive 24 children at the Youth Ranch. But the next day Dinnin was asked if BCFS could supervise sheltering operations in San Angelo "for up to 150 women and children." At the operation’s peak, the shelters housed 550 women and children.
As "incident commander," Dinnin and BCFS were tasked with providing oversight and coordination for all the agencies responding to the crisis. During the three weeks the children and mothers were housed in San Angelo before a court ordered the children placed in child-care facilities across the state, approximately 1,000 state, county, and city personnel and volunteers worked under BCFS supervision.
The agency interacted daily on critical incident decisions with the commissioners of the Texas Department of State Health Services, the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services, the Texas Department of Public Safety, Gov. Rick Perry’s staff and other local and statewide elected officials.
BCFS deployed 55 employees, including most of its senior administrative staff, and more than $1 million in assets. In addition to two mobile medical clinics and a mobile feeding unit, BCFS provided communication technology for the operation, including VHF radios for communication between all responding agencies, satellite uplink for Internet telephones, 28 laptop computers, plasma-screen and projector displays for incident management and direct, real-time, visual incident-management communication with the Texas State Operations Center in Austin.
While state child-protection officials and Texas courts decided about placement of the children, BCFS ministered to emotionally stressed women and children around the clock; respected the FLDS adherents’ religious practices by providing organic, non-processed meals and acceptable toys and play activities; treated outbreaks of chicken pox and respiratory infections (FLDS children do not take inoculations); created an alternate phone system when the cable to the shelters and command post was accidentally cut; developed contingency plans for all possible court rulings; processed mountains of laundry; and handled all purchasing.
When the courts ordered the transfer of the children to facilities across the state, BCFS used GPS technology to track the bus convoys dispatched around Texas.
"To categorize the sheltering operations as 'highly successful' is a gross understatement," Dinnin added. "To quote Chief Colley of the Governor’s Division of Emergency Management, BCFS was the 'rock star' of the San Angelo operation. We do appreciate that -- but being noted for providing ‘Best Care for Children’ is the highest compliment possible."
In the past few years, BCFS has gained a national reputation for its expertise in such operations. Last month the Federal Emergency Management Agency asked it to be a "subject-matter consultant" to develop a "functional template" for special-needs shelters.
BCFS also is in charge of training Texas cities in setting up such facilities and recently began doing the same for the state of Nevada.
The BCFS incident-management team has undergone a nationally recognized training program and is credentialed through the Federal Emergency Management Agency in various aspects of emergency management. The team’s 55 members were pulled from BCFS programs across the state. Most worked 14- to 18-hour daily shifts on the front end of the operation.
I am not going to the legal aspect; I see it from a mom and social worker view point.
I don't want those little girls with their comatose moms and pimping dads.
Regardless of what one thinks about FLDS, this case has given the entire US a glimpse at CP$ SOP that was implemented on a mass scale. What occurred in this case occurs on an individual family basis many times every day. CP$ comes in, rips the children from the family, and then asks questions later. However, in those cases, they get to hide behind the secrecy of the corrupt family court system.
The bottom line is that if these children truly were abused per definition of TX law and were not "protected" by CP$, it's CP$'s fault. If CP$ hadn't been so interested in attacking easy targets (many of which are usually innocent) or Christian homeschoolers, they could have intervened at the FLDS compound much earlier. If they had not exposed their disconcerting SOP to the whole country, they could still operate as they had been. CP$ had "Suspected" that children were being systematically abused at that compound for several years and did nothing. Suddenly, they come in like the keystone cops and wonder why they look bad.
I don't know what the specifics of Texas law as pertains to child protection proceedings are, but I know Michigan's. The same standard of evidence is not required to remove children as it is to convict someone in criminal court of a crime. The standard for CPS is "preponderance of the evidence" not "beyond a reasonable doubt".
It does appear that Texas jumped the gun, and removed the kids without performing at least a cursory investigation. Because of their hasty actions, they lost the case. But this is a case that goes so far beyond the average CPS investigation, because of the way the FLDS live in compounds, and segregate themselves from society. My coworkers and our colleagues in the attorney general's office have been wondering what we would do if a situation like that were to occur here. I'm expecting a 20 page memo to that effect sometime soon, even though we have no FLDS compounds here. We get other assorted weird groups, from the legitimate to the otherwise. It was lucky in the Rainbow Farm standoff (it didn't get a lot of national attention, in that it occurred on Labor Day weekend in 2001, and was soon pre-empted from the headlines by a much bigger story) that the one guy's kid had already been removed from his care. There was a cult living in a trailer park in the rural area between Grand Rapids and K-zoo, when I was at WMU. They beat a child to death, and the leader and the mother of the child were incarcerated for a time, but later released. They started the cult back up in Alabama, from what I read in the GR Press.
It appears Texas compromised their own case by taking all the children at once, without regard to individual family units and situations. Yet, from a practical standpoint, I don't see any other way they could have done it, given the closed setting of the FLDS compound. The compound does look a lot nicer than the fictional Juniper Creek compound on "Big Love", though. Thousands of kids in Detroit live in far worse physical environments.
Sadly, the same level of proof is all that is needed to Terminate Parental Rights (TPR). One would think that if a parent is so bad that they deserve to have their parental rights terminated, that it would take a higher burden proof to do so. That's why TPR should be treated like a criminal matter because, being that bad of a parent truly is criminal, IMHO. The problem is, if CP$ had to adhere to such a standard, their present ability to terrorize and destroy completely innocent and/or easy targets woud be greatly prohibited. Furthermore, this case in TX is further justification for the outlawing of anonymous reports or at least, the vigorous prosecution of those that are made maliciously. CP$ seldom, if ever, seeks to press charges against those that maliciously manipulate the system via anonymous reports. It would be bad for their business.
Sadly, the same level of proof is all that is needed to Terminate Parental Rights (TPR). One would think that if a parent is so bad that they deserve to have their parental rights terminated, that it would take a higher burden proof to do so. That's why TPR should be treated like a criminal matter because, being that bad of a parent truly is criminal, IMHO. The problem is, if CP$ had to adhere to such a standard, their present ability to terrorize and destroy completely innocent and/or easy targets woud be greatly prohibited. Furthermore, this case in TX is further justification for the outlawing of anonymous reports or at least, the vigorous prosecution of those that are made maliciously. CP$ seldom, if ever, seeks to press charges against those that maliciously manipulate the system via anonymous reports. It would be bad for their business.[/QUOTE]
I am very cautious about filing to terminate parental rights. I hate to do it on a case I've been working with for a while, and won't if the parents are participating in the services offered. The ironic thing is that it used to be more diffiicult to make terminations stick, and it isn't anymore.
Certain types of abuse are automatic grounds for terminating parents' rights:
Sexual abuse (the perp)
refusing to kick a sexual abuser perp out of the home
abuse or neglect of a sibling that resulted in death or a sever injury, or the continued relationship with the party that committed that abuse or neglect.
birth of a new baby with drugs in his or her system when rights have been terminated in the past for the same reason.
I don't have a problem with any of those situations, unless the drug mamma has pot in her system and the baby has no drugs in his. The hospitals are not supposed to report the cases if only the mom has drugs in her system to begin with, but they all do anyways. But the pot in mom's stream and not baby's leads me to question whether the mother actually used drugs, or was around people who did.
Anything else, I hold to a higher standard than the law. I go for about 75%, not 51%, before I file to terminate. The courts won't always terminate, either, if there are VA or SSI benefits for the kid at stake or a potential inheritance.