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TED 
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Re: “DHS officials outline ambitious plan to reform state's child welfare system

How timely....Too many children are taken from homes that should have been left with their families? I am sure this does happen, and how tragic and disruptive for children when it does. BUT- In light of the Torres conviction story, also in the news this week, I think it imperative that inappropriate removals are not the only take away from this reporting. Protocol differs from county to county, staff member to staff member. All too often, children are left with families that should NOT be...all too often local judges, police, and court systems have the opposite reaction and tell DCFS workers they do NOT want to see petitions to remove children.

Differential response has been in place for years now...so have erred decisions of "unsubstantiated" abuse and neglect. It sounds great to we democrats that families are "helped" and given the necessary resources to improve parenting skills and keep these families together. Of course it does. I am sure that families that do/can respond to resources are MUCH BETTER OFF when this works. It does not always work. I know of one family where differential response was tried 6 times. They NEVER accepted any of the counseling/parenting/rehabilitation efforts that they were offered. At one time resources were used to buy new car seats for toddlers--the family never owned a car. The children were lucky to leave the home once or twice per year. How do I know? I have those children now. The 4 year old needed 11 vaccinations to get into preschool.

Thank God I have those children. And you know who else I have to thank? A WONDERFUL, CARING, INSIGHTFUL, family service worker whose dedication to the safety of children prompted them to contact me and let me know how to move forward with saving these children from being scattered across the state in different foster homes. I am forever grateful, and God willing, they will remain in a SAFE, loving home from now on. People who know me well know that I would not have it any other way. It does my soul good to provide this for them. Some nights I do have to remember one of my favorite quotes, "Sometimes the hardest thing and the right thing are the same". I just hope that with the current administration resources for OUR family will remain in reach...like mental health services to treat the PTSD two of them have and the resulting ODD diagnosis one of them has. Too bad they had to remain in the home so long. Those 6 years of countless "unsubstantiated" reports of abuse and neglect by a multitude of concerned (and completely unrelated) reporters were at a cost that these innocent children will pay for years. All is fair in love and war...and I will fight to the finish to get these children what they need to lead happy, productive lives. As luck would have it, just this morning, NPR reported that under Trump's currently proposed tax plan that so far it will benefit all those EXCEPT single mothers of children. Under his proposal there will not longer be tax deductions/credits per child. There goes that glimmer of hope for relief.

I pray nightly for those still out there waiting for someone to help....and for the soul of Isaiah Torres...and for his surviving siblings who are still paying the cost of our broken system.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by TED on 11/17/2016 at 10:20 AM

Re: “Arkansas's foster care surge due to 'questionable removals' of kids, DHS consultant finds

Steven- My comment included "in certain counties". I was recently in court regarding "said children" and the visiting judge stated that things are certainly run differently in the neighboring county. BTW- years of "unsubstantiated" findings, along with "differential response" response has equaled heart breaking psychological assessment results on these children (ODD, PTSD, RAD). NO to your next thought/question...DHS/DCFS did NOT do these assessments. They were sought outside of the system due to extremely troubling behaviors, very understandable given the hell they lived in for so many years. And yes, Ms. Hayse, "May God help us all and set our families free..." More importantly, may God help and set free children who were born to psychopathic parents unwilling/unable to provide the most basic of care and refrain from exercising horrific physical, emotional, and sexual abuse on them. Sad, tragic, but in many cases true. I feel sorry for the Stanley's. I truly do. I feel more sorrow for the children who were left behind but should have taken: https://ardhs.sharepointsite.net/CFN/defau…

PS- "said children" are safe now, only running from the demons in their little heads, not the ones in the next room...now to concentrate on finding the resources necessary to enable to them to live successfully in society and not repeat the cycle they were born into.

0 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by TED on 10/17/2016 at 3:40 PM

Re: “Arkansas's foster care surge due to 'questionable removals' of kids, DHS consultant finds

I hate it when the knee jerk reaction to these stories is that DCFS is overzealous in the removal of children. I can tell you from experience that in certain counties in this state that is FAR from the truth. In way too many cases children are left in dangerous, life threatening situations due to the limited number of foster homes in that county. Some of these families have 9, 10, 11 calls to the hotline from family, strangers, acquaintances...with all or most of those cases being deemed "unsubstantiated". How can that be? How can SO MANY unrelated, concerned individuals be so wrong about the abuse/neglect they are witnessing? They are not, and sadly these children are left to bear the consequences of the severely broken system. AGAIN...check out the yearly report of child mortality in Arkansas and note how many of these poor children might still be here today if someone had properly investigated after folks in the community tried to help them by contacting DCFS...

5 likes, 7 dislikes
Posted by TED on 10/12/2016 at 10:30 AM

Re: “A child beaten, slain despite red flags

"It's apathy. It's resources. It's pressure from superiors to unsubstantiate cases, to keep the workload down," said a source familiar with DHS, who spoke on condition of anonymity. "This whole rehoming thing with [Rep.] Justin Harris — everyone was outraged, but it's nothing new." The source said the impenetrable confidentiality requirements of DHS are often used to shield the agency from accountability: "Basically, what you've got here is that DHS has over the years put up so many walls, they're almost untouchable."
EXACTLY. There are SO many of these cases out there, yet somehow this has been allowed to go on for years....until tragically one of these children makes the fatalities list:
https://ardhs.sharepointsite.net/CFN/defau…. Keeping children in these homes is such a callous act, one wonders who in the world is capable of caving in to "...pressure from superiors to unsubstantiate cases, to keep the workload down." And yet, they find them.

7 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by TED on 04/22/2015 at 10:22 AM

Re: “Parents of slain Bella Vista child had parental rights terminated on multiple other children in 2005

As a family member who has reported the abuse of a young child, it sickens me to see the DHS/DCFS response to these latest news stories. It is as if these are worse case scenarios of the extreme minority of cases when it come to the incompetent, inept, and callous responses to child abuse. This is not the case!

I had no idea of the state of child protective services until this past year. I am horrified by the recent tragic cases of child fatalities, but at the same time I am sadly not surprised. Regarding my family's situation, by the child's mother's account ("people keep calling DHS on us for no reason") DCFS has been called 8 times in 3 short years. I made ONE of those calls. Again, by the mother's account, the other calls were made by neighbors, store employees, strangers. Common sense tells us that for every call made there are 3-4 people who don't call for whatever reason.

Please keep speaking out! Mandated reporters, family members, concerned citizens, people who presently and previously work(ed) for "the system", please continue to educate the general public regarding what a grave injustice it is to these children who remain unprotected. There is a petition on change.org by ArkSTACA regarding the danger of a state relying too heavily on Diffrential Response in order to keep families intact at all costs. Please sign this petition. When the cost is a child's life, the price is not only too high-but never acceptable!

4 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by TED on 04/20/2015 at 10:33 AM

Re: “Speaking of Justin Harris: Cleaning up the record

Sounds like Harris wasn't the only one playing God. I have dealt with Blucker in the past, simply trying to help a child only to watch her play God of DCFS and play an extensive game of CYA. I have absolutely no problem believing BOTH sides of this story regarding her role and behavior. She pulled the strings to make sure the Harrises were able to adopt these girls and immediately jumped into CYA mode when the whole deal went horribly wrong. And the clamming up? She did the same to me, right after she demanded "everything I have", meaning photos and extensive call logs and emails with her staff. I honestly thought she intended to help, only to find out later that the third party on the call that she introduced was an attorney. After demanding "everything" from me, her next email said she could no longer speak with me, as I was "not involved in the case". Seems to me she is much more worried about protecting DCFS from bad press and her own career than she could ever be about protecting children.

4 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by TED on 03/09/2015 at 8:32 PM

Re: “Speaking of Justin Harris: Cleaning up the record

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Posted by TED on 03/09/2015 at 8:18 PM

 

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