On Child Protective Services, Part 1: Putting Children Before the Family

Many of you in the South may be familiar with DFCS (pronounced dee-fax), the Division of Family and Child Services. In California, this same agency is called DCFS, the Department of Children and Family Services. I think these labels say a lot about what the agencies are designed to do. While the service DFCS renders is the “division” of family and child, at DCFS, they put children before the family—to the detriment of the family unit, the authority of the parents, and even the well-being of the children. Paradoxically, putting the individual interests of the children before and above the interests and integrity of the family unit is actually bad for children.

Recently, a story circulated about the Sacramento parents that lost custody of their children after a run-in with hospital protocol and CPS. We featured an article about it. According to the top commenter on that article, the parental abuse that went on in Sacramento is just “a sign of the times we live in and the Police State Obama is developing.”

There’s just one problem with that comment: CPS has been abusing parents for quite some time—long before the Obama administration. It will probably get even worse, but CPS has already been wrongfully accusing parents of child abuse while simultaneously neglecting its most basic responsibilities (on your dime, by the way) for many, many years now. I want to take the next few articles to discuss some of the facts about Child Protective Services and their calculated assault on parental rights and the sovereignty of the family unit.

This topic is of great personal interest to me. Almost four years ago, my wife and I were falsely accused of child abuse and our twin girls were taken from us by LA County DCFS while we were visiting Los Angeles. It took us about three months to get them back (which is a really quick turnaround actually… though it felt like an eternity), and even though not a single claim against us was upheld or substantiated in court, my family was held hostage in California for months while CPS tried to minimize their liability. We experienced extraordinary emotional distress and financial burden. My wife was pregnant at the time, and I was a high school teacher on summer vacation. I couldn’t abandon my pregnant wife and twin daughters to go back to work in Georgia, so I lost my job. More on all of that later.

Throughout these articles I will be recounting some of our firsthand experiences with CPS. This is not just an abstract thinkpiece for me. My wife and I, as well as our girls and prenatal boy, went through it. As you will see, this organization is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. Knowing the truth about it is not enough. We need to fight it.