Purple is the in color you know! And, I aim to please. Here I am standing on the steps leading to the legislative building. This is where rallies are usually held...but not for us.
I have arranged for the rotunda inside the legislative building so that we don't get caught in bad weather. Here is the press release issued today. I have omitted spacing to save space:
Washington State SenateSen. Pam Roach
For immediate release , January 15, 2009
Senator Pam Roach to call for DSHS Accountability at February 5 Rally
10:00 AM PRESS CONFERENCE TO PRECEED RALLY, JAC ABC
Auburn…Sen. Pam Roach (R-rural Auburn) has announced her Families’ First rally at the Capitol Rotunda in Olympia on February 5, 2009 at 12:00 noon.
The subject will be the need for justice and accountability within DSHS Child Protective Services.
Roach believes CPS is out of control, and she is giving voice to the thousands of children and relatives hurt by the department.
Roach led the successful 11 month effort to return the granddaughter of Doug and AnneMarie Stuth to their Enumclaw home. (Please see: KING 5, “Up Front,” January 11, 2009. Investigative reporter, Susannah Frame, covers this story.)
“It is time the citizens of Washington stand up against the atrocities of this department,” said Roach. “We expect hundreds, if not thousands, of people will join their voices to publicly be heard by the Legislature and Governor.”
Washington Families United, Grandparent’s Rights of Washington, legislators, and citizens demanding accountability will be in attendance.
“Of the Stuths,” Roach said, “we have become family after our year-long struggle. These are good people who fought and won. So many others have had their children stolen.”
“Doug and AnneMarie Stuth, the Enumclaw couple recently awarded third party custody of their grandchild, will be in attendance,” Roach said.
“Their horrific story shows just how intent CPS has been to separate good families from their children,” said Roach. “On the other hand, they often leave children in harm’s way.”
“Just one month ago, between Christmas and New Year’s, two infants returned to their respective homes, died by shaken baby syndrome,” said Roach. “This is absolutely atrocious.”
“The rally is intended to give hope to the thousands of families injured by the negligence of CPS,” Roach added.
“As in other cases, the Stuths have been terribly hurt by the system,” said Roach. “They deserve vindication for all the untruths told in court and should be compensated for the $50,000 they spent trying to get their granddaughter back.”
“It is not a coincidence that both DSHS Secretary, Robin Arnold-Williams, and CPS Director, Cheryl Stephani, announced their departure from the department just three weeks ago, and two weeks prior to a scathing report on CPS practices they knew would be released by the State Ombudsman,” Roach added. “Out of the hot seat, but not out of the fire.”
“The leadership in the department has not addressed accountability within the system,” Roach said.
“I will be proposing legislation to break DSHS into smaller agencies to increase accountability and efficiency,” added Roach. “Another piece of legislation includes creating a Citizens Review Committee of CPS.