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Monday, July 2, 2012

Saving Baby Sarah: A Fight Against the State of Texas Power and Ignorance












As of late, we have witnessed the government and all of its entities utilize an excessive exertion of power in every facet of our daily lives. Most times its subtlely swept under the carpet or tucked back in the corners of our mind, without considering the lasting and often damaging effects that it has on those involved, directly or indirectly. What has become painstakingly reality is that many individuals, children, and families don't fully return to that oh so familiar since of normalcy, especially when in the land of the free, mother's (biological, universe appointed or otherwise) can't protect their children and fathers cant provide for their home, without the governments approval or dictatorship of who, when what, where, and why (and thats on a good day, when tax payer opinions are chosen to be acknowledged, let alone heard). My thought process used to be, right will prevail, that is until legislative and judicial bullying put me in my place. Sadly enough, thousands of families are torn apart by this "because I said so" mentality. Baby Sarah and her universe appointed/CPS approved family, the Smith family has provided Sweet Tooth Media, with their first hand experience of this madness. 





According to Harris County Child Abuse Task Force, the Texas child population at the end of fiscal year 2009 was 6, 510, 210. In addition to that, Texas had 213, 332 reports of abuse and neglect and 25, 428 of those reports occurred in Harris County. Take a look at other stats reported: 
  • Confirmed Findings of child abuse/neglect:
    Texas:  24.3%          Harris County: 20.4%
  • Child Abuse Related Fatalities
    Texas: 280         Harris County: 67
  • Children in Foster Care at the End of the Fiscal Year
    Texas: 19,992          Harris County: 4,962
  • Number of children adopted
    Texas: 4,859           Harris County: 933       
                                                                           







Alarming, I know, but whats even more alarming is that 41.8 % of referrals/allegations were for Neglect not to mention that its 2012 and the numbers have increased. Now certainly the existence of child abuse and neglect isn't a new phenomena, but what seems to be constant in many of these cases is that, state agencies appointed to oversee the cases are making decisions prematurely and blindly. Child Protective Services have been in the news more for the harm their decisions cause, as opposed to the help that they were established to provide. According to www.RT.com, The parents of a 4-year-old girl are outraged after their daughter was placed under the care of Child Protective Services and then heavily medicated with psychotropic drugs. The child was allegedly removed from the home and her parent's rights suspended when the child was only three years old because the mother tested positive for cocaine. It is unclear to Sweet Tooth Media, who made the CPS referral or why but it was reported that CPS testified that the child had not been abused or neglected. Furthermore, the child who when removed was reported to be a happy and healthy child, but while in the care of CPS, the then three year old was prescribed psychotropic meds such as Risperdal, to calm the child who clearly acted out because she desired to be with her family. As a former CPS worker, I know all to well the dark side of CPS and all those involved. This child, is not the only child 'medicated' so that the adults who removed them from the family can 'deal' with them and foster parents can collect payments for them.  RT.com states, "A report from ABC News published in November 2011 reveals that around one-fourth of foster children examined by the Government Accountability Office were prescribed at least one psychiatric drugs, with thousands of youngsters forced to take doses higher than what the FDA approves.
“And hundreds of foster children received five or more psychiatric drugs at the same time despite absolutely no evidence supporting the simultaneous use or safety of this number of psychiatric drugs taken together,” ABC adds in their report.
The network adds that in Texas, home of the Harrison Family, children are more likely to be prescribed psychotropic drugs than non-foster children in four other states examined — Florida, Massachusetts, Michigan and Oregon — and not just by a little.
“In Texas, foster children were 53 times more likely to be prescribed five or more psychiatric medications at the same time than non-foster children,” the ABC report reveals. Nationally speaking, children in foster care are nearly five times more likely to be prescribed psychotropic drugs than non-foster children.
In the case of little Rachel Harrison, her parents say a CPS-appointed physician filled out a Risperdal prescription for their daughter, but only after he met with the girl for 16 minutes. Dr. Osagie ignored attempts from Fox to comment on the issue, the station reports, which very well be because he is very busy — they network adds that he has so far treated 755 children in CPS foster care.
“When a parents messes up, you call CPS. Who do you call when CPS messes up?” asks Christina Harrison to Houston’s Fox 26.
“There’s nothing you can do.”



Yolanda Smith, a leader/entrepreneur in OUR community and her family, share similar feelings as the Harrison family. Two years ago, July 17, 2010 (to be exact) she and her family were blessed with an unexpected package that came in the form of a child, Baby Sarah. Sarah's biological family was not able to care for her. The mother is mentally ill and believed to be using drugs and left Baby Sarah in the home with her grandmother who is physically ill and non-ambulatory. Being only a few months old and for days on end, Baby Sarah would be left an a bug ridden bed, in soiled diapers, drinking clabbered milk. The grandmother received home health care and as a professional that individual was required to report the obvious neglect that existed in the home. Once CPS removed the child, and placed in the Smith home at the request of the mother, because Mrs. Smith had been acting as a guardian angel to the family by bringing them food and other items to help. Baby Sarah, born with several difficulties and ailments, has undergone at least 2 surgeries all within the first year of her life. The Smith family, not her biological family were there to support her and see to it that she recovered successfully.  Doctors said that she would never walk or live a normal life. To date, Baby Sarah is walking, talking and living a fully functional with no help or encouragement from her biological family. 



Fast forward to 2012, the grandmother begun to encourage the mother to get Baby Sarah back because the Smith family begin speaking adoption and figured that since the CPS case has been open for two years without placing the child back in the home of the biological family that adoption would be painless and in the best interest of the child. It has been everything but simple. On June 27, 2012 the Smith family with baby Sarah in tow, found themselves in a CPS court in which the mother requested that the child be removed from the Smith home and placed in a licensed foster care home/facility. Clearly distraught the Smith family, had no clue what happened and wonder who was actually acting in the best interest of the child. The biological family's home is still in no condition to return the child and the mother barely completed any of the courses assigned by CPS, which shows that she is unable or unwilling to provide proper care and a safe, nurturing environment for the child. Since Sarah's removal, the Smith family has been unable to see Baby Sarah, is unaware of her Guardian Ad Litem, and are generally unclear about what has gone wrong. In addition to that they have been  contacting the CPS offices, supervisors and program directors over at the Eastex office but to no avail hasnt received any response back. Mrs. Smith disclosed that, " Sarah is on medication and because I had to leave her there at the court she doesnt have any of her personal belongings, including medication. I called for three days at the Chimney Rock Center before anyone came to get her medicine. I don't even know if it is being administered as prescribed..." Mrs. Smith also told Sweet Tooth Media, that the acting case worker is being reassigned but doesn't have any information on who the new case worker will be. These are all normal concerns that a caring parent would have...so you're probably wondering the same thing that I am, Why was it so easy for them to destroy this family?


The answer to that is unknown. Why are people who have no knowledge of the families, and individuals that make up the family able to decide what happens? What evidence was presented to have the child removed aside from the request of a mother who couldn't/didn't care for her in the first place? Was the best interest of the child even considered? All to often, people with no stake in our lives make decisions for us based on, the air up there! This blog isnt to say that the child should not be with her biological family, because as with CPS, I believe that children should be with those that will care and provide for them in a thriving environment and in this case, the Smith Family are those people. It is my hope that something be done to reunite Baby Sarah with her REAL family-The Smiths. To help, it is asked that you read and share until a fair decision has been made in this case. 
Help us Fight in the Safe Return of Baby Sarah, by sharing and signing this petition:  
You tell me, after TWO years, is this the face of a child that has NOT been properly cared for??? Of Course not, but the GREAT state of Texas has other plans for this child, to satisfy their own sick interest instead of the Child's Best Interest! Where is the logic?










"Buzzworthy Cravings, Creatively Satisfied!"

3 comments:

  1. This was such an amazing article its amazing what goes on our world and the ones who are most helpless..the children always always get the shaft..its crazy

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  2. I sincerly pray that the "System" comes to their senses on this heartbreaking case. They need to understand how painful and devastating it is for the child. In this case baby Sarah. This beautful little girl has overcome enough obstacles in her young life. She NEEDS the unconditional love that the Smith family has given her. It is a disgrace if they don't understand that. GOD is on the Smith's side because he knows what is in their heart. Continue the fight.Don't give up. Blessings to the Smith Family. Praying for you all.

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  3. I Pray that the system recognizes what is Best for baby Sarah and return her to her home, with the Smiths. My prayers go out to Baby Sarah and the Smith family.

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