Friday, June 05, 2009

Bad CPS bill deserves a good veto

Jerri Lynn Ward alerts me to a bad amendment approved in the legislative session's waning hours heaping new authority on CPS to allow them to undertake child seizures and interrogations without first notifying parents. The Parent Guidance Center issued this press release calling for a gubernatorial veto. See discussions from Tim Lambert of the Texas Home School Coalition and the blog The Travis Monitor. According to Lambert:
the bill was substituted in committee for a very different SB 1064, which was passed out of the Senate and sent to the House. The new SB 1064 gave the court authority to force parents to give CPS access to the child and/or transport the child for "interview, examination and investigation," without a court hearing or notice to the parent. Worst of all, the language in the current statute that requires CPS to prove "good cause shown" was stricken. Thus this bill would allow CPS, during an investigation in which the parents would not waive their 4th amendment rights, entrance into their home, access to medical or mental health records of their children or transportation of the child, on the simple filing of an affidavit by a CPS worker with no hearing or opportunity for the parents or their legal counsel to present their case.
The bill language allows CPS to access records without parental consent or a court hearing and lets them transport a child for questioning based only on an affidavit (without a hearing or a finding of "good cause") if the parents won't consent. Parents must be notified afterward as soon as practicable, but I don't see why it's not "practicable" to notify them beforehand.

This is clearly an overreaction to the fiasco surrounding the Great Eldorado Polygamist Roundup, and an unnecessary one. I'm disappointed in Rep. Patrick Rose and Sen. Kirk Watson for carrying this piece of junk. Ward, Lambert and other conservatives are calling on the Governor to veto SB 1440 and I'd have to agree the bill deserves an ignominious demise.

Follow this link to tell the Governor your opinion.

27 comments:

Anonymous said...

Although I do not believe anyone in my family would require CPS, this is a very scary law. Just as other Totalitarian countries long since failed have been allowed, this bill gives the government all the help they need to take your child, place them in 'protective' care, and begin the breakup of the family unit.

I surely hope this thing is veto'd, if not the ramifications are huge.

Anonymous said...

In retrospect of the agency’s foolishness surrounding the Great Eldorado raid, those nazis can have my children when they pry them from my cold dead hands. It’s the little pip squeak minded people that make up such agencies who are paying back society for all those wedgies they suffered in high school. The Czars of Russia would take Jewish children from their families, called snatching, to assimilate them. This is a sad amendment and the politicians who wrote it and voted for it should really step back and reflect on their upbringing and their education and ask themselves is this really the right thing to do in a free democracy. I truly hope that our governor veto’s this bill.
Sheldon

Anonymous said...

You people must hate kids. When a child is the object of abuse by a parent, you can't conduct a legitimate investigation by first notifying the perpetrator, who can then shut down the best source of information on the abuse (the child). And with or without this new law, CPS has the authority (indeed, the duty) to conduct such an investigation.

If done properly, the child will be taken to a children's advocacy center, where a neutral, trained forensic interviewer will obtain a statement from the child. The statement is recorded, so that others can later evaluate the statement and make sure the interview was conducted in a nonleading manner.

And, based on that information, law enforcement and CPS can decide whether a parent is a perpetrator. If not, then the child can be returned with no harm. If yes, then the child can be protected through a removal and a continuation of the investigation.

Stop seeing boogeymen in every dark corner. Start joining the real world of child abuse, where parents are sometimes the criminals. Indeed, in most abuse cases the child is being abused by the very people who are supposed to be protecting them.

Anonymous said...

@Anon3:27 You said it. They already have the mandate to remove an at-risk child. They don't need this legislation.

People like you and yours spreading the fear of abuse are the main cause of these laws to begin with. Child abuse is not some out of control rampant monster that you and CPS make it out to be. I will agree that some small groups of children are at risk, but far from the terrible wave of abuse that people just like you claim. The largest abuser of children is CPS itself.

Anonymous said...

Every child should be appointed an attorney, before that child says a word to anyone without the consent of the parent. WTF? The U.S. doesn't apply to children?

I totally agree with "can have my children when they pry them from my cold dead hands."

Anonymous said...

Anonymous @3:27 said
"If done properly, the child will be taken to a children's advocacy center, where a neutral, trained forensic interviewer will obtain a statement from the child."

For one thing, that can be done now, without this added legislation.

For another thing, the key phrase is "If done properly". I know of several investigations not "done properly". The web is ablaze with reports of CPS abuse of power.

And this legislation makes those "mistakes" legal.

Anonymous said...

If Perry doesn't veto this, the supreme court will eventually

Anonymous said...

They take them where? to Foster homes? Foster ao called parents abuse kids sexually. They are not their own kids. They do abuse them for sure/.

May be that is the whole purpose behind taking them from their parents. This is to advance the homosexual actyivties and the political agenda world wide to break up families.

Anonymous said...

One in four girls will face sexual abuse. In most of those cases, the abuse is perpetrated by a family member. Wake up you idiots.

Anonymous said...

"One in four girls will face sexual abuse. In most of those cases, the abuse is perpetrated by a family member. Wake up you idiots"

That is a tainted lie. The report done has already been shown to have used tainted data. 1 in4 and 1 in 8 is a myth perpetuated by liberal groups to scare the masses.

Gritsforbreakfast said...

Yeah, let's see a cite on that one in four number - that sounds like BS to me.

Anonymous said...

Google it for yourself, Grits. Shame on you for your shallow attacks based on ignorance and a blinding liberal weirdness.

Anonymous said...

I just sent an email to the Governor asking him to veto this bill. I was stunned to see Zaffirini's name on it; then realized she authored the ORIGINAL bill which dealt with an appellate time table, not CPS. I'm sure she will have a few choice words for Rose & Watson. I will follow up with phone calls on Monday. The only ones here who hate children are the ones who think CPS should have unlimited power over Texas families.

The Pharisee said...

Assuming that the "one in four" stat is accurate, it would sound as if abuse is rampant in society because of human nature itself.

I don't see such a pervasive characteristic being mitigated by transfer to foster care.

Gritsforbreakfast said...

Oh, I see 6:47, so you have no source. Okay. Sounds like somebody defined child molestation awfully broadly to get to that absurd statistic. I guarantee there's no hard data that supports a guesstimate that large. There's no question the number of proven or even reported incidents is smaller by orders of magnitude.

Even so, if one in four truly are molested, courts and prisons cannot be the solution because of sheer volume. Neither can foster care, as Hugh points out.

Finally, though you complain of my "blinding liberal weirdness," it's liberals who are pushing expanded powers for CPS and mostly conservatives opposing it. At least get your smears straight if you're going to indulge in stereotypes.

Anonymous said...

""One in four" has since become the official figure on women's rape victimization cited in women's studies departments, rape crisis centers, women's magazines, and on protest buttons and posters. "


This report shows how the original studies done by Koss in 1990 and Kilpatrick in 1992 have used the skewed numbers to solidify the outrageous claims of the 1 in 4 myth. Have a look:

http://www.leaderu.com/real/ri9502/sommers.html

This report was done by Dr. Christina Hoff Sommers, associate professor of Philosophy at Clark University. Her resume is pretty impressive.

AUTHORITY DIS-BELIEVERS UNITY!!! :)

Gritsforbreakfast said...

Thanks 11:13 - I thought those claims sounded bogus. Sommers' piece shows that number is an extreme outlier based on an absurdly flawed methodology.

In the study the number came from, 3/4 of women the researchers said had been raped did not themselves think that was the case. That would put the real figure at around the 6% range - still significant and troublesome but not nearly as dire as one in four. That's a fake number.

S.O. said...

11:13 here. Yes, Rape is rape and is a terrible thing. The ramifications of the 1 in 4, 1 in 8, etc has been the criminalization of peer to peer sexual relations of teens, the latest sexting issues, as well as creating the social sub-class that is the sex offender registry.,

We need to wake up and put some common sense in the mix as well.

Anonymous said...

Grits:

I'll bet this legislation is has to do with the Gates decision (and the Dept's over reaction thereto) v. the Eldorado mess.

DFPS is scared goofy over Gates and the potential loss of qualified immunity for its workers.

From the 2008 CPS "advisory" on Gates:

"The Gates case is significant for two key reasons. First, it sets out a new standard that will require DFPS to obtain a court order prior to removal in a much larger proportion of our cases and affects whether we can transport or enter a home. Second, it is significant because it clarifies that if the standard is not followed, staff could be sued as individuals and lose qualified immunity, i.e., be responsible for monetary damages. Staff will still be represented by the Attorney General. However, it is our intention to revise our policies and practices so that you will stay protected and avoid needing representation in the first place, and you will not lose qualified immunity."

And for Gates, see:

http://www.ca5.uscourts.gov/opinions/pub/06/06-20763-CV0.wpd.pdf

Anonymous said...

That is entirely possible, but if they actually Do their jobs legally, there is no need to worry about their 'qualified immunity', now is there? This is a really bad way to continue to allow really bad things to happen.

Anonymous said...

Gates set out the constitutional boundaries for CPS actions. So how can a mere revision to state statute trump the ruling? It can't. If CPS acts as though it does then the agency is, IMHO, negligently asking for another lawsuit.

But I suspect CPS will do so. It seems to be the agency's way of demanding its way at all times (welfare of children and families be damned, quite literally).

Boyness said...

Perry is on the record opposed to due process when the issue of CPS and "protecting" children is involved.

Governor Good Ole Boy stuck his foot in his big mouth during the fiasco in West Texas. Perry is not about anything critical of Texas law enforcement or criminal injustice. 40 DNA exonerations and this idiot still cannot execute em fast enough.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

Google it for yourself, Grits. Shame on you for your shallow attacks based on ignorance and a blinding liberal weirdness.

6/06/2009 06:47:00 AM

KEEP AUSTIN AND GRITS WEIRD!

Anonymous said...

I've been battling CPS for awhile now, you see since I do not have medical insurance and my job doesn't provide it and the fact I DO NOT want to live on the Government of Texas, I declined Medicaid. My youngest son has seizures and we go to free clinics to get his medicine. One day he has a seizure, we took him to the ER, CPS was called, they took our kids! They said it was due to medical neglect! CPS is criminal, they told us WE HAVE TO BY LAW be on Medicaid! Talk about the Gestapo! We are telling our story to the major news outlets, CNN, NBC, CBS and Fox, hopefully something can be done about this!

Anonymous said...

1 in 4 children are molested sounds accurate for kids in tyc. How come the cps nazis don’t go after tyc?
Sheldon

Anonymous said...

I do not think this law should pass. When my son was 5 days old, I had to leave him behind because he was in icu. the next day cps came to my home. apparently the hospital called them cause they were concerned cause i was diagnosed with bipolar and the hospital was concerned because i didnt want to get back on my meds. well i was living with my mom and they found out that she had a criminal background. cps called me and told me i either move out of my mothers house or i lose my son. he wasnt even home yet and my mother has never abused any child. she was doing good for herself. i moved in with my dad (i found out when i was 5 months prego that my husband was cheating on me with my stepsis and my stepmom knew about it and supported it before i did) and i had to face them when i moved in. cps closed the case a few months later cause there was nothing to investigate. when i called cps on my sons father for possible child abuse they didnt do anything. my mom and i did nothing and they forced me to move out. my ex husband might have done something and they did nothing. cps needs to pay attention on children that are being abused. not on children who are very much loved and taken care of. this bill should not be passed. if they think they can talk to my son without telling me it will be a very cold day in hell.

Sam A Sapienza said...

I would really like to know what nefarious authority is really behind this CPS? I remember hearing children were being taken away from families during the Nazi regime in Germany. Did that behavior spill into our culture? I was never really that interested in anyone's kids but my own. Why is due process absent in these cases? Is this the first step in creating a totalitarian government take over of our families and friends? If anything at all these organizations should be subject to the same rights and due process as anyone else. WHO'S INTERESTS ARE BEING SERVED? THIS IS WAY BIGGER THAN OUR GOVERNMENT IS LEADING US TO BELIEVE!