blank'/> Liberally Lean From The Land Of Dairy Queen: Baby, Baby

6.04.2007

Baby, Baby


I don't "do" many CPS (Child Protective Services) hearings. The only way I get involved is if the judge appoints me to represent a parent (the person the child has been removed from) or the child itself (herself? his self?) I've told the judges that I don't mind doing my part of community service (lord knows I have too many criminal court appointments), but keep me away from CPS cases. Normally, that happens.

But today I spent about 30 minutes in a hearing on whether CPS should be able to temporarily keep a baby that was removed from the mother just days after the mother gave birth. It's not quite this simple, but, in essence, CPS wanted the judge to authorize their continued possession of the child due to the mother's drug use during the pregnancy. Interestingly, the mother quit using meth two months before the birth and has been clean (as evidenced by a few drug tests) ever since. On the day of birth, mom was negative for any drugs as was the baby. Nevertheless, CPS came in and took the baby.

Tough calls.

For now, the judge said that CPS could keep the child (she's actually in the possession of her grandparents) but everyone agrees that if mom can stay on the straight and narrow, she can have her baby back.

Life is hard. I hate these cases.

Edit: After some very kind "Nice job, Barry" posts, let me clarify: I didn't have a lot to do with the hearing other than to monitor it on behalf of the child. The CPS lawyer, Regina Anderson, did all the hard work. And CPS investigators did all the pre-hearing leg work.

23 comments:

Anonymous said...

The judge made the right decision to protect the baby by letting the grandparents care for their grandchild.

No one knows how much damage has been done during the seven months the mother was on meth.

Meth is a big problem in our county and probably in other counties. It is cheap but once a person gets on it, their life is really messed up. Meth is why so many children are in foster care.

mzchief said...

TO Barry...
Congratulations for being a part of a situation that enables ALL parties the chance to "win." Hopefully, the infant is in a loving secure home with the grandparents while relieving the mother of the stress of caring for an infant and giving the mother a a realistic chance of staying clean and GETTING her life in order so SHE can provide a loving healthy environment for HER child.

This is a PERFECT example of a woman NEEDING to do what she is SUPPOSE to do to get what she WANTS when she is ABLE.

Anonymous said...

Man I would hate to be CPS....would have to be one of the hardest jobs ever! No credit if you made the right decision.....and if you try to let a parent have a second chance and its the wrong thing.....wow....

Anonymous said...

Yes, meth IS a big problem in our county. And don't forget CPS is overloaded. They also change employees (due to burn out, no doubt) which clogs up the system, delaying everything while the new folks play catch up. By the time it gets to court, folks are trying to figure out who knows what about what from whomever.

Anybody remember Saginaw? The little town that folks slowed down in because they didn't want a speeding ticket?

My hope is that Wise County will become the town where you don't abuse our children or you WILL pay the price........

...in court with a lawyer who WILL take the case and win it on behalf of that child.

...no matter how tough it is or how much the case is hated.

Anonymous said...

Uh 8:01, cases don't get transferred here. If we're the county that is tough on child abuse, perhaps we'd do good to take a look at what is creating the abusers in the first place. Its easier to prevent it from happening than to deal with the aftermath. But most of you don't understand that.

Anonymous said...

CPS is overloaded but they do it to themselves. They are much needed in a lot of instances but they step over their bounds often. I have personally been involved in a CPS case that was such a screwed up mess it is no wonder why they can't keep employees. Who would want to do that job?

Anonymous said...

We discussed only a few days ago the incredible abuse of the CPS organization by vengeful ex-wives and girlfriends who fraudulently make sexual molestation charges. We then sit back and do nothing EXCEPT talk about how overloaded CPS workers are. What is wrong with this picture?

I also commend Barry for doing his part but what if this child had slipped through the cracks because the overloaded CPS caseworker was following false allegations in a divorce situation. I honestly ask you, Does anyone win in a divorce other than divorce lawyers?

Anonymous said...

Wise, Cooke and Hunt Counties have the highest CPS caseloads in the State of Texas. It is a tragedy for Wise County children because the CPS workers are attempting to protect them but the "State" is putting the workers at a desperate disadvantage. With 70+ cases for two workers in this county it is an impossiblity to meet the standards the State requires of them. Not only that, their own desires to do a good job for these children is taken away.
Wise County CPS office has some wonderful workers who care about the families and the children. It's ashame the "State" can't/won't help the smaller counties.

Anonymous said...

HAVING DEALT WITH CPS, YOU PEOPLE HAVE NO IDEA THE POWER THEY HAVE, AND NO ONE TO ANSWER TO. THEY THREATEN, LIE,AND ARE ON A POWER HIGH. THE BABIES IN WATAGUA ON TV A FEW MONTHS AGO, CPS WAS NOTIFIED WEEKS EARLIER ABOUT THE BABIES. NOTHING WAS DONE UNTIL CNN PICKED UP THE STORY, THEN CPS ACTED TO SAVE FACE.

Anonymous said...

That Mother should never get that child back. Look at the stats on relapse on meth. Anyone who would put meth in their body while pregnant doesn't need to have a child = ever...The damage may not be known for years. Just because you stay clean for a couple months, big deal. You blew it and you should pay the consequences.

Anonymous said...

8:59 - some of us do know what the problem is.......out of control families.

Give us your quick easy solution to that.

TXsharon said...

I used to volunteer for CPS in Fort Worth. It was rough. I couldn't believe the things people did to their children and the situations in which some children live.

Good job, Barry.

TXsharon said...

Hey, good job that you recognize the complexity and heartbreak of the situation.

Anonymous said...

8:01, My hope is that you learn the difference between a town and a county. Mschef, How do you know that this is a perfect example. All this crystal methodist is needing is another fix and this is not what she is suppose to do but she will get what SHE wants from her dealer when she is able.

Anonymous said...

Meth use by a parent isn't the only reason a child can be abused.

"Deliver us from Evil" is a documentary about the sexual abuse of children by priests in the Catholic Church. It is helping to open minds to this type of abuse in an enviornment that we would normally think of as safe and loving.

The documentary is terrifying.

We do indeed live in a sick world.

mzchief said...

To anonyNOTHING 1:51...
Are you her dealer?
The LAST thing the mother "needs" is a "fix." She MAY want one but a fix is most CERTAINLY something she is not SUPPOSE to do/get IF she WANTS her child when she is ABLE to care for her child. It is ALL about that bloody annoying deferred gratification system.

YOU sound like one of those people who has difficulty reaching your goals because you do NOT understand what it takes to ACHIEVE a goal.

Good luck to you.

Anonymous said...

My goal is you leaving Wise County and it sounds like it's working.

Anonymous said...

I'm just wondering if the grandparents are the best choice for the kiddo. After all, they were her mother's parents. How did they fail her - the mother? How will they really take care of the little kiddo? It could potentially be some self-perpetuating creepy kind of thing.

Things like this need to be addressed on a higher level - mental illness - that thing we are all afraid of.

Anonymous said...

4:39 - so just who are the mentally ill in our society?

Perhaps it is society itself.

Anonymous said...

I'm calling CPS on MzCreeps Forehead!!! It's been abused!!!

Anonymous said...

9:54 AM
CPS has many people to answer to....most importantly the children, the parents, the attorney's, the Judge, and all superiors.
A judge makes all the rulings in a case, CPS only makes recommendations.
You don't know what has been done in a case unless you are there.

If you were involved in a CPS case, I'm sure you have hard feelings about CPS. Every case is different and the outcome is truly up to the parents. If they are willing to participate in the program and provide a safe and healthy environment for their children then they have been successful and that is a good feeling for all at CPS.
No case is is worked light hearted, it is all done with the "best interest of the child" at the top of the list.

Anonymous said...

11:55 - Some say there is a serious turnover of case workers in CPS. If this is so, do you know why?

Anonymous said...

TO 9:54 I'M SURE YOU PROBABLY WORK
FOR CPS. KNOWING A CASE VERY WELL, AND YES I HAVE BEEN TO A HEARING
AND I STILL SAY THEY ANSWER TO NO-
ONE. I HAD AN INVESTIGATOR TELL ME
THAT CPS HAS HAD BAD PUBLICITY, AND
THEY WERE GOING TO USE THIS CASE
TO HELP CLEAN THEIR IMAGE. YES, THERE ARE GOOD CARING PEOPLE WHO DO
THIS JOB FOR NOBLE REASONS. BUT IT
IS STILL RUN BY THE GOVERNMENT