I. Children Victimized by Wrongful Removals
The goal of the CPS system is to protect children from abusive situations and provide them with a safe home. However, in practice, the opposite of this often occurs. Children are routinely removed from their homes without justification (i.e., actual evidence indicating that there has been abuse or neglect).
In some cases, the reason for removal is something trivial such as children playing in normal conditions or because of an anonymous accusation with no factual support against the family. Removal from one’s home is a life-changing event from which many children never fully recover.
So, from the perspective of a child, a CPS removal is no different from a kidnapping. It doesn’t matter how nice your kidnappers are. They’re still strangers. They still took you from your parents against your will. They still won’t let you see, call, or communicate with your parents and very often your other siblings. And, they still won’t let you go home. It doesn’t matter that this may be deemed what’s “best” or “safest” FOR the child because TO the child it feels like everything they were ever taught about Stranger Danger and kidnapping has just happened to them.
~ Johana Scott, Executive Director, Parent Guidance Center
II. Healthy Families Destroyed
Currently, numerous flaws in the CPS system give CPS the power to run rampant over the rights of Texas parents and families, ultimately hurting children. Families under investigation by CPS find that the system is heavily stacked against them and facilitates an environment where parents are considered guilty until proven innocent.
A variety of factors contribute to this reversal in parental rights:
- A number of loopholes and unclear mandates in Texas law
- Lack of accountability for both CPS officials and courts
- Sections of Texas law failing to give parents sufficient options to defend themselves when they are threatened with the loss of their children.
The end result of these problems is that, in many cases, instead of children being protected, healthy families are destroyed by the broken CPS system.
CPS is tasked by law with protecting the children of Texas from abuse and neglect. Because of the many loopholes and issues with current law, however, not only does CPS often harm children by removing them from safe homes, but it tramples on the most basic rights of parents, destroying healthy families in the process.
~ Tim Lambert, President, Texas Home School Coalition
Goals of the Bill:
- Protect children from unnecessary and harmful investigations and removals by clarifying the standards that must be met before a child can be removed from his or her home.
- Close loopholes in current law that allow CPS to ignore deadlines and other necessary mandates without any repercussions.
- Provide additional protections to families and parents by reforming the legal procedure allowing families an effective defense while remaining innocent until proven guilty.
Keep informed on the development of CPS reform by signing up for email notifications.