Petition for Audit and Reform of Child Protective Services in North Carolina
Whereas the freedom to parent one's own children is the most cherished and fundamental human right, transcending all other concerns,
Whereas the United States Supreme Court has found that a parent's right to "the companionship, care, custody and management of his or her children" is an interest "far more precious" than any property right, (May v. Anderson, 345 US 528, 533; 73 S Ct 840,843,(1952),
Whereas state and federal courts have repeatedly deemed the relationship between parents and children to be a constitutionally protected liberty interest covered by the Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment,
Whereas across America children are being removed from their own homes and placed in those of strangers with reckless disregard to constitutionally protected rights, immediate or future consequences for the family and the best interest and wishes of the child,
Whereas the mere possibility of danger does not constitute an emergency or exigent circumstance that would justify a forced warrantless entry and a warrantless seizure of a child, (Hurlman v. Rice 2nd Cir. 1991)
Whereas the National Center on Child Abuse and Neglect has reported that children are more far likely to be abused or suffer death in foster care than in the general population,
Whereas case- and social workers have been known to withhold, destroy, and tamper with evidence and testimony,
Whereas parents who attempt to bring charges against CPS or protest the injustice of their treatment are often bullied or coerced by social workers through threats to remove the child, denied or limited visitation or pursuit of termination of parental rights,
Whereas CPS and Juvenile Court are unreasonably protected against charges from parents by a confidentiality clause,
Whereas CPS workers fallaciously and immorally attempt to equate agreement and compliance with their agency with proper care and concern for one%u2019s child. Conversely, social workers often deny that a parent who disagrees with CPS findings is capable of caring for their children. A person's love for their children cannot be measured by how well they follow the dictates of a tyrannical government agency,
Whereas psychiatric counselling, couples and individual therapy, anger management classes, parenting classes and so on are demanded of parents (often at their own expense) even while parents are denied the fundamental rights of a just system and access to their children,
Whereas Federal Law currently provides financial incentives to CPS ranging from $4000-6000 for each child adopted out,
Whereas State Departments of Human Resources (DHR) and affiliates are given a baseline number of expected adoptions each year based on population,
Whereas state and county agencies receive financial bonuses for achieving more than this expected number of adopted children each year,
Whereas state and local governments have grown dependent upon this source of income to balance their budgets,
Whereas social workers, judges, court appointed lawyers, psychiatrists, therapists, foster parents, guardians ad litem, etc depend upon a steady flow of children through the CPS guided adoption process for their job security,
Whereas the gross expenditures that keep CPS afloat are paid for using taxpayer dollars,
Whereas there is no incentive to keep children with their families or to reunite families,
Whereas a government becomes illegitimate when it attempts to coerce individuals to sponsor an organization that they do not support and that works contrary to their best interests,
Whereas it does not "take a village to raise a child" - it takes a family,
We the undersigned, do request and demand:
1. A complete and independent audit of the practices of North Carolina Child Protective Services.
2. A Federal Congressional hearing on Child Protective Services nationwide.
3. An abolition of the Federal and State financial incentives that have turned Child Protective Services into a business that separates families for money.
4. That parents be informed of their rights verbally and in writing.
5. A mandate that, pursuant to North Carolina HB 896 (1997) and HB 1720 (1998), family members must be given priority over foster care for children placed out of home.
6. A strict enforcement of state and federal laws providing that children shall not be removed from their home without a warrant unless there is clear evidence of an emergency or exigent circumstances.
7. That a warrant be obtained before a child can be removed from the home and that such a warrant not be granted but in instances of immediate physical jeopardy to the child in question.