Legally Kidnapped

Shattering Your Child Welfare Delusions Since 2007

Sunday, October 28, 2018

A vote for the Republicans could be a vote for more kids being removed by CPS and thrown into foster care.

Why I'm writing this...

Politically speaking, I consider myself an independent and like to look for the good and bad in all candidates so that I can make an educated decision on who I want to vote for.  I vote for the person who is most concerned with issues that are important to me rather then the party, so to speak. 

Something that I've noticed over the last couple of years is that my Facebook friends list has become increasingly skewed to the right (outspoken conservatives, Republicans, Trump Supporters).  In fact, my news feed seems to be 3/4ths Conservative Propaganda these days and it's absolutely ridiculous to see on an anti-CPS page because in the state I live in, which is Maine, a vote for the Republicans is a vote for MORE kids being removed by Child Protective Services and thrown into foster care.

Duhhhhhh what? 

I'll say it again.  A vote for the Republicans in Maine, and probably nationally, IS a vote for more kids being ripped from their families by CPS and thrown into foster care.  Not only that but a vote for the Republicans is a vote for making it harder to get your kids back when they have been snatched by CPS. 

The result of 8 years of Republican Leadership in Maine...

I only say this because after almost 8 years of a Republican Administration and Republicans in control of the State Senate as well as the Republican pick to head DHHS, Ms Mary Mayhew, child removal and foster care numbers in Maine have shot up, anti-parent child abuse propaganda has increased and the services that had been used in the past to to either help reunify families or to help keep a child safe while still in the home have been cut or de-funded to almost nothing under the guise of welfare reform. 

As a result of Republican Policies, Maine's CPS workers have nothing to offer you anymore in terms of help or services to a family who  is under a CPS investigation, so they take the child and run instead because that's all they can do.  Maine's Republican Governor Paul LePage even recently signed a new bill into law which removes reunification with the family as a priority in child welfare proceedings, freeing up funds to give raises to CPS workers and increase foster care reimbursements, which are much more expensive in the long run.

Maine is now taking a more heavy handed approach to dealing with parents than they did in the past.  They are also taking more kids than they can handle because some of them are ending up in motel rooms. 
Why do Family Rights people fear the Democrats?

Now, based on what I just said, the typical response of a parent whose family was destroyed by CPS would be something like this.  "Oh but Hillary Clinton," and "ASFA," and "bla bla bla."  Yes, one bad apple spoiled the whole bunch.  Hillary Clinton demonized a whole political party.

Perhaps you're thinking something like, "Trump signed Family First into law, and he did it to help families," which to his credit, he did sign it into law as part of a spending package, then pissed and whined about the democrats making him do it after. 

That said, Family First has its problems too, but the basic philosophy behind Family First is the exact same thing that Maine was doing under the Democrats which as recently as 2011 made Maine's Child Welfare System a National Model because of being leaders at keeping kids safe in the home.  This was done by providing the necessary family preservation services such as drug treatment, counseling, housing assistance or whatever it may be.  Family First freed up federal funding so that such family preservation services could be utilized instead of being specifically designated for foster care programs.  Something that Maine and the Republicans are desperately trying to move away from.

By late 2017, Maine's Child Welfare System was and remains a mess to this day with the most horrific child abuse cases falling through the cracks while the parents who just need a little help getting their shit together are being left in the dust with little hope or chance of ever seeing their families together again. 

So the Democrats, in my opinion, currently have a better track record for helping to strengthen families and the Republicans have a better track record of heavy handedness and cuts to funding for services that help to strengthen families.  A recent example of how the Republicans want to handle things is Trump's or rather AG Jeff Sessions zero tolerance and family separation policies at the border which the Republicans love and support for some reason.  I think it's sad and pathetic, but just think of how much money the agencies are making off of the immigrant children they are caring for now. 

All of that said, for me, the final nail in the Republican coffin was when President Trump appointed Maine's former Commissioner of DHHS Mary Mayhew, a total CPS loving parent hater, to head the federal Medicaid Program.  The Family Rights groups should fiercely oppose this choice for that particular position because Family Preservation can not happen without the services that are often paid for by Medicaid.  Ms.  Mayhew has a seven year history of extreme cuts and de-funding of programs in Maine that helped families to stay together.  So the problems in child welfare that have been totally created by the Republicans in Maine are going national.

So who should you vote for?

You should educate yourself on where each candidate stands on issues that are important to you.  If CPS is a concern of yours, find out where the candidate stands on issues like family preservation, or parental rights.  Then you should vote for the person who cares most about those issues. 

After all, not all Republicans are bad.  Nor are all Democrats Hillary Clinton.  Some might even have some good solutions in mind.  But if you're just going to vote Republican just because you still hate Hillary or to piss off the liberals, then you are an idiot, because if they are anything like what they are like in Maine, you could be screwing your own kids out of their parents.


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