I hope to keep this list ongoing. If anyone would like to contribute to this list, please comment.
Here are some things I learned about the way Child Protective Service Social Workers and the agency as a whole, operates:
1. Be aware that if any social worker calls you to tell you that they are closing their investigation and you need to bring the child(ren) down to their office to sign some papers THIS IS A TRICK! THEY INTEND TO KIDNAP YOUR CHILD. They do not need a “signature” to close out anything!
2. Often, social workers will try to bluff you claiming that your drug test results were positive just to get you to fess up on yourself. Do not fall for this trick.
3. Social workers are “collaborative partners” with ALL OF THEIR CONTRACTED SERVICE PROVIDERS. Never trust any employee or doctor that CPS has paid to provide you “services”. Those “confidentiality” laws mean nothing when it comes to providing CPS with any and all information about you. They only use these laws against you. You have a right to all the information in your file regardless of where it is.
4. NEVER ADMIT TO THINGS YOU DIDN’T DO. This is where I messed up. I was constantly pressured to “take responsibility for my actions” during our first case. I was threatened to have my children removed if I didn’t say that I had a drug problem. I wish I would have stood my ground and hired an expert witness to testify as to the legitimacy of those drug test documents.
5. Never give the Hearing Officer a dirty look.
6. Never ever believe a social worker. If they say that they are recommending that the case be closed, maybe the paperwork says that but that doesn’t mean that is what they are really telling the Hearing Officer to do. This is just so you don’t give them a hard time when dealing with you for another six months.
7. Always ask the Hearing Officer in court for a copy of the Minute Orders. That way you don’t have to pay for it at the clerk’s office or go through the hassle trying to get one. They can print it out right there in the courtroom and hand it to you. When you get home, make a copy and send it to your lawyer because they are never seem to have a copy of it.
8. If the Hearing Officer orders CPS to do something for you and they do not do it, warn the social worker and their supervisor that you know you can file a document for them to be found in contempt. Give them a deadline of not more than 5 business days to comply with the Minute Order and follow up with a confirmation letter. Send this letter to the social worker, adding a “cc” to their supervisor and the agency Director.
9. Child protection workers are like cops. You have the right to remain silent because if you share your strengths and weaknesses with them they will use it against you to kidnap your children. – Pure Mad Angel
The following was inspired by a document available on another site, http://nfpcar.org/References/DOnDont.htm
10. Never invite a social worker or law enforcement into your home. This is if you do not have a current open CPS case. Unfortunately, if you refuse to let social workers in when they do their home visit it will have a very negative effect on your case and could result in the removal of your children. However, if the children are not currently placed in your home, they have no reason to be there unless it is to assess your home for the return of your children.
still more to come…I’m tired…going to bed….nite….