Last December, THSC President Tim Lambert met with the Commissioner of the Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) to create clearer policies for the Child Protective Services (CPS) regarding Texas families and their well-being. After THSC communicated concerns to Commissioner Specia, the DFPS updated the Investigation and Family-Based Safety Services (FBSS) policy–which guides CPS workers in complying with Texas law–and emailed a copy to THSC to hear our concerns.
Unfortunately, the updated policy had several conflicts with legal requirements in the Texas Family Code, which would result in loopholes that pose a threat to children and families.
Some of THSC’s concerns included clauses that infringed upon the parents’ rights to the upbringing of their children. For example, the policy allowed a child to be interviewed without the knowledge or consent of the parents, which not only creates a lack of accountability, but could endanger the child’s well-being. This update also included a requirement that CPS workers photograph children without first obtaining the parent’s consent. Other issues included mandatory interviews of children even when the caseworker deems them unnecessary, unclear guidelines regarding releasing allegations to a family’s legal counsel, insufficient due process measures, and unclear standards for the criminal history classification of foster parents.
THSC serves as a voice for Texas families–committed to protecting your parental rights–and found this updated proposed policy to be a threat to your freedom. As a result, Tim Lambert delivered a letter to the DFPS Commissioner outlining in detail our concerns, and recommended adjustments to continue Keeping Texas Families Free. We are hopeful that the DFPS will understand the threat of this policy to Texas families and act accordingly.
If you would like to remain up-to-date with the current status of this issue for your family, consider subscribing to emails from THSC. The Coalition regularly intervenes to battle for THSC members. Are you a THSC member? Would you like to join the fight? Consider giving or joining today.