Thursday, September 18, 2008

Nine Dead Children In DSHS Region 5 Since January 2008

What kind of government department is this, anyway?

I had noticed the May 31st front page story in the Tacoma paper about a three year old who had been killed while part of an open Child Protective Services case. That was stunning to all who read about it. Then there was another case in the area where the mother of a young child (also an "open case") poked pins in the eyes of her daughter leaving her blind.

Again, in August, same paper...same front page...there was yet another three year old under the supervision of the department....DEAD.

No one walks up to a legislator and says, "Hey, look at this!" You have to take a look yourself. And, fortunately, when a staffer knows you are interested in a subject they may volunteer information.

The following was sent to me Monday, September 15th, by a staff member:

Senator Roach,
"There have been 9 child fatalities in Region 5 since January 1, 2008. Region 5 encompasses Pierce and Kitsap Counties. It is my understanding that of the 9, 6 were on open child protective services cases and 3 were on open child welfare services cases. Four of the 6 fatalities on open CPS cases were homicides. Let me know if you need anything further."

Ladies and Gentlemen,

In this kind of proportion, carried out through the state and in a full calendar year, we have an epidemic of mismanagement!

No wonder the very respected Council on Accreditation has denied the department's application!

It is no wonder that our State Auditor prioritized CPS for a performance audit and found it lacking!

In many cases CPS is just not following the law that the people made, YOU made, through our legislators. If management (all paid over $100,000+ a year) were doing their jobs our state would earn a higher evaluation. And, I believe we would have more children alive today.

(One of the really pathetic things here is that they seemingly take no one's suggestions. More on that later.)


Anonymous said...

We are foster parentsin Region 5 and I will tell you that department is horrible!!! They do NOT take the best interest of the child to heart,instead they do what makes their jobs easier. We have seen first hand the hurt it causes these kids, someone needs to make DSHS/CPS accountable!!

coventryhome said...

I am witnessing at this very time CPS taking a child away from her mother who has legal and physical custody and handing her over to her father. I saw and heard the CPS case worker working with, and coaching, the father on how to do this, right in the court house!. The father lives in Oregon and the case will be offloaded, foster home opened, funds will be saved. The child is a 13 year old girl. After a visit with her father (one of only 2 visits in 7 years), she come backs and immediately reports her mother to CPS for abuse. She did this at one of her little girlfriends house. Sheriff took the child and gave her to CPS. No arrest was made since there was no evidence of abuse (actually, the sheriff said it sounds like she was coached what to say). This was a Friday evening. The following Monday comes and there is a placement meeting at the CPS office in Bremerton. The father who has been out of the picture for many years, and, I might add, has just filed bankruptcy, is at the meeting and wants immediate custody. He has already retained an attorney, and has been collecting school records since before the report of abuse. It was discovered in the meeting that the father has promised the child a horse and a car. Two days later, Wednesday at 1:30 is the permanent placement planning meeting at the court house. The mother is served in the waiting room with a restraining order against the father and the child in CPS custody, and with papers to change custody over to him. Doesn’t mom have rights to visitation? Isn’t there is an investigation going on? I will tell you straight up, the allegations are FALSE!!! She has dotted on this child all of her life, and the child never went with out, except she couldn’t give her a horse, and the child wants a horse. The child has a record at juvenal hall already for assault.
This is why the system is bogged down. People are using CPS to fight over custody and child support.
CPS should focus more on protecting abused and neglected children now helping out disgruntled spouses.