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You've gotta understand about social workers. I've gotten to know four of them. Each one of them is about as screwed up as you can get. I wouldn't leave my dog with them. -- Colorado businessman

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Child Protective Services' out of control? Who is watching?

Case History:

A 12-year-old adopted boy with a history of serious mental and emotional problems went to school one day and told his Garfield-Palouse middle school counselor (Sue Martin - no longer working at this school district - 12/02) his mother beat him up. He said she slugged him in the nose, choked him, socked him in the chest, threw him up against the wall, sat on him and hit him 150 times with a board.

The teachers saw no bruises or any signs of a "beating" but called the town marshal anyway. The fairly inexperienced small town Garfield cop (Bruce Grass - no longer employed by the Town of Garfield - 12/02) found two small bruises on the boy's right thigh and concluded that bruise was "consistent with being hit with a broken board" and took him into protective custody, despite the boy's fantastic, unbelievable story. This town marshal spent most of his adult career as a diesel mechanic and was hired in the small town a few years ago.

Whitman County Child Protective Services removed the boy from the home, put him in protective custody and launched an investigation into child abuse.

Background:

This boy was adopted at age 4 from the state coming from an extremely abusive environment. Diagnosed with ADHD, Fetal Alcohol Effect and several other emotional problems. Months prior to the above event he began checking himself routinely for bruises and asking parents "what causes bruises" and "how long do they last". Parents were confused by the questions but after the incident above it fell into place.

He was checking for bruising in order to report to his counselor what he thought she wanted to hear because he was being taught in classes about "abuse" and how to stop abuse (or in his case, "get your parents" and be a hero to your counselor).

Open Investigation:

The mother admitted to having spanked the child with a paddle because of disrespect and continual lying but said she was sure she never hit him on the thigh, only six strokes on the buttocks. Several plausible explanations were given as to how the boy could have received the bruises but the CPS social workers did not accept any of them. None of these explanations were ever put in any of the social worker's reports.

The Whitman County social workers said they never saw any bruises on the boy. A doctor viewed one bruise the next day on his thigh, which was described by the doctor as "a 4.5cm x 10cm bruise with a spiral pattern."

The boy was described in school records as a difficult boy that was prone to lying and going to extremes to seek attention, yet the school officials believed the boy's fantastic story and passed it on to other officials, who also in turn believed the boy without question. They said his story was "consistent" and never varied and for that reason believed his tale.

Based on one small bruise and the boy's fantastic story, he was removed from his home and placed in foster care. The mother was charged with child abuse and the father was also charged with abuse because he failed to protect the child from the spanking. This allegation was reversed later by a CPS judge after the parents spent around $25,000 on lawyer fees.

When Whitman County social workers entered the home neither the mother nor the father was informed of any of their constitutional rights. As a matter of fact, the workers entered with words of compassion saying they were there only to "help."

The trusting parents were candid and quite open with the workers as they knew they had nothing to hide and knew they were having some pretty large problems with their mentally and emotionally challenged adopted son. The abuse he suffered before coming to them was severe and had left him very damaged and scarred. They were actually hopeful the social workers would assist in some way and offer some help that had been absent from the agency in the past.

Little did the parents know that the social worker's feigned words of wishing to "help" were in reality a mission to gather material for a report that would twist everything said by the parents, taking statements out of context in order to make the parents look their worst. The parents trusted the system' the system raped the parents.

When the parents asked for a review of the case, no further investigation was done, but the file was rubber stamped "abuse" by Whitman County CPS Director Barb Sheffler. When asked for further review it went to Spokane, Washington, where a director there reviewed only the files prepared by workers in the department. No further questions of the parents or further investigation was done.

The case was appealed by the parents and the parents are now in bankruptcy following the court cases and appeals because of huge attorney fees to fight to get this "abuse" removed from their file. The CPS judge upheld the abuse charge on the mother but it was dismissed on the father. Because of financial problems the mother could no continue to appeal the finding. No apology was ever offered to the falsely accused father.


Paranoia, Immunity, Secrecy & Guilt

This is a true and documented case, which was fought in the courts at great expense to the innocent parents. What is more shocking is it is not an isolated case. Many such cases of CPS extremes are brought to light on a regular basis and are receiving more and more attention in the courts and on the news nationwide. The slant taken by the media is often against the parents, however. Some parents are abusive but many charged are not and should be given the benefit of the doubt.

Click here and judge for yourselves if these particular parents seem like the monsters the childsavers of Whitman County have set out to make them appear. They, like their counterparts in other states and counties, have preconceived notions that all parents are 'guilty' until proven 'innocent' just the opposite of what we are guaranteed in the US Constitution. Child Protective Services all across the United States have been given absolute power and Whitman County, Washington, is no different.

The extremes to which CPS social workers go is abusive to families and rips at, tearing apart the very foundation of this great country (the family). The social workers are virtually immune to being forced to take responsibility for their actions. You can not sue them in many cases. They hide behind their cloak of invincibility garnering more and more power. They have created a system of paranoia within the schools, the professional world and general citizenship, telling professionals and school workers they must report any sign of child abuse, no matter how small. And, they are told, if these people do not report what may or may not be abuse they can lose their jobs and be prosecuted.

One local school worker said, "I report everything! That's what we are told to do. Then it is out of my hands and I don't have to worry about losing my job."

CPS is so busy chasing the paranoia of this system they have created, looking into and investigating every referral they receive from frightened teachers and counselors they have no time to work on cases that are major and truly need their attention.

Money is a driving force behind CPS as it is in any business. CPS receives most of their funding from removing children from homes. Each time a child is removed from his/her home the department is given thousands of federal dollars, which is used to further the department's efforts and programs.

Get Educated

It is important that you educate yourself to the corruption in this governmental department and the obvious desire of the Department of Children and Family Services to micro-manage every family in their jurisdiction. They will not be happy until they have every parent in the United States parenting only by their book. It doesn't matter what you believe or what you feel is best for your child' you become only a babysitter, CPS the parent.

Educate yourself and do not trust these people when they come offering "help". Their help comes with a venomous bite from which you may never recover. Each time a state worker affiliated in any way with the Department of Children and Family Services comes into your home offering help they are documenting things about your life that can and will be used against you later. Even bogus calls to the department about abuse from those who have decided to get even with you for one reason or another are left documented in your "case file" and will be pulled out at any time to be used to make a case for abuse.

There are referrals to CPS that even the workers told the family were totally fraudulent that are left in the files for possible future use. There are cases in files that were investigated by CPS and found to be false that are still there just in case they could be used later. In no other judicial process, except CPS cases, can these types of untrue claims be brought up, put in reports and used in court against the accused. CPS is allowed leeway that this country has banned in any other court.

It is possible for a good, strong closely-knit family to have CPS make a report that says, "this family has 10 referrals, four for abuse, three for neglect and three for sexual abuse," when in reality those referrals were called in to CPS by an angry neighbor, an ex-wife or ex-husband, someone wishing to hurt the parents or parent. CPS referrals have become the weapon of choice for persons seeking revenge.

Once you become educated about the extremes of CPS, do not remain quiet. The only way to change the system is to make your voice heard loud and long within the legislative branch of government. Call for reform of this system — call it long and loud to any representative, any senator, any congressman that will listen. The change has to take place not only on the state level, but federal level as well. These people need to be redirected to "help families" not tear them apart. They should not be rewarded for removing children but should be rewarded for developing ways to assist families to remain in tact.

Please feel free to copy this and distribute at will. This article was originally published on Latah Eagle.