About Us

WORKING TO HELP GEORGIA’S VULNERABLE CHILDREN BY CHANGING PUBLIC POLICY CONCERNING CHILD ABUSE, FOSTER CARE, AND FAMILY PRESERVATION

The members of the Georgia Coalition for Child Protection Reform have encountered the child welfare system in their professional capacities. Through GACCPR, we work to make that system better serve America’s most vulnerable children by trying to change policies concerning child abuse, foster care and family preservation. At the Georgia Coalition Foundation, we partner with organizations around the state of Georgia to support initiatives that respond to community needs involving parents needs for better housing through cleaning up their homes etc. (this is something new and will be in the making come the middle of May near the end of May), and in keeping in the realms of “reasonable efforts” by completing the necessary plans drawn up by DFCS in their parenting or case plans. In saying this, you have to have your very first report where dfcs is initiating a classification of reasonable efforts being administered from their case file reports.
NCCPR, and GACCPR

Georgia Coalition for Child Protection Reform does not give legal advice. No one person associated with this blog is an attorney. We are parents who have experienced accusations from CPS/DFCS, and our perspectives and suggestions are from that point of view. Is a known fact that the Dept. of Family and Children Services, Child Protective Services agencies are abusive to families and children. This blog is intended to provide support and information to parents falsely accused of child abuse by Child Protective Services If you have an attorney available, Georgia Coalition for Child Protection Reform will gladly work with your attorney in helping you in your CPS, family court case.

If you are involved with a Child Protective Services /CPS) agency, the most important suggestion we can give you is to hire a good family law attorney. Any suggestions seen on this site should be discussed with that attorney who will have the best advice for you based on the locality in which you live. We do have a list of good attorney’s that we keep on file, so please don’t hesitate to ask.

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4 Responses to About Us

  1. Jennifer Bennett says:

    Please help if you can:

    To whom it may concern,
    My husband, Michael Bennett, and I are reaching out for intervention and help. On 9/24/2014 our then six week old daughter began feeling unwell in the early hours of the morning. After a couple of hours of waking and whimpering and falling back to sleep she became lethargic, limp, and unresponsive. 911 was called immediately as we then knew this was not just a tummy ache. She was life flighted from Spaulding county to CHOA at Egleston. When we arrived her sugar was dropped below 20 and we were fighting to keep her sugars up. After she was stabilized in the ED, she was moved to the PICU. It was here that the doctors came in and discussed possibilities. One possibility was that she could have been injected with a needle (knowing that Dad, Michael Bennett, is a Type 1 Diabetic) in our home. My husband and I dismissed that possibility and we remember even resenting that the doctor brought it up and found it sad that social workers had to come in so often these days. However, three days later we were shocked to discover that is in fact what happened. With the shock of the news it also brought relief as we were thinking up until that point that she was suffering from a condition called Hyperinsulinemia and the medication to help with that had side effects that brought us to tears. Diazoxide was the medication. When presented we asked for time to think about the implications on our daughter’s life because the medication caused excessive hair growth all over the body. We are so glad we didn’t agree to introduce this medication into her little body.
    When the doctors came in to explain how they discovered the insulin was externally introduced (this has to do with a hormone that doesn’t attach to synthetic insulin) they brought social workers in with them as per protocol. We understood, we were just shocked. Then the CPS agent, Kizzy White, and the law enforcement agent, CPL. Kelly Mckinny, questioned my husband and me over the next couple of hours. While I was in being questioned my husband called my mother in law first. He asked if our thirteen year old knew anything about this. She said no. Then he called my mother, who happened to be at the hospital as she had brought our 4year old up to visit us in the lobby. My mom, who is very close to our 4year old son, then asked him if he had ever messed with daddy’s medicine. My mom can best recount how their conversation went but after being assured he would not be in trouble for telling her the truth he told my mother that he had messed with it and was going to give himself a shot, but decided to give Pheonna (my 6week old instead) a shot bc he didn’t like needles. He gave her great detail about how he did it and she called my husband back.
    After waiting for someone to go down and speak with her my mom got frustrated and not wanting to get stuck in traffic with my son said she would have to leave. I took the phone down the hall to the officer and cps agent and explained to them that my mom was worried about traffic and had a work deadline. They could hear her expressing her frustration over the phone. They told my husband and I just to tell her to leave. So we went down and saw our son for a minute to say goodbye (assuming he was going home with my mom until his sister was released or until they had a chance to talk to him or my mom). They left and my husband and I went back to the PICU and were called in and told our children needed to be placed with family or sent to foster care, we would have supervised visits with the oldest three and no contact with Pheonna who would remain in the hospital for the time being. Shock doesn’t begin to describe my emotion.

    Immediately after I think I was having a panic attack, I guess. I was having a hard time breathing and I was crying. At one point I was told if I couldn’t calm down (mind you I just had a baby 6 weeks ago and have just been told I’d have no contact with her until further notice, and I nurse her) that I would have a restraining order placed on me and would not be allowed to deliver pumped milk to her. I don’t think I was being hysterical at all, panicked maybe but not more than I would expect of another woman in that situation. We made our phone calls, one being to my mom to tell her she would have to drop Solomon off at my grandmothers because they decided my mom was not a viable solution for placement because she had left the hospital (even though they gave us permission to tell her to leave). We signed papers placing the oldest three with family and were led to believe they were still our children (custodial wise) which I have now learned that we do not have custody, the county does. We left distraught but hoping things would move and be cleared quickly.
    In the meantime I have been unable to nurse my daughter and my milk supply is steadily declining. On Monday I called Kizzy White before the children’s forensic interviews. Throughout the conversation she kept reiterating that my 6 week old had been injected with insulin and the four year old couldn’t have done it (she had already made up her mind on the matter). She raised her voice at me several times. I read to her a statement about a 72 hour court hearing (from her pamphlet) and was told that could only happen if the children were in foster care and that if I wanted her to remove them from where they were she would be happy to place them in foster care and give us our hearing. I’ve since learned that she would actually have to prove where they are is unsafe to do this. She also stated that I said I wore Pheonna (in a baby carrier) and never left my daughter alone. In all reality I probably said something along those lines in the original interview with the assumption that, as mothers, these two women (CPS agent and Officer) knew that I laid the baby down at some point. Reality is that I do have her by my side most of the time, but sometimes she is in the bed, I don’t find this statement significant but when it was used against me by Ms. White I was concerned. It was a blanket statement I made in a state of shock. I also asked repeatedly what I could be doing to be proactive in the return of my children and time and time again she would not give me any answer on how we could work toward the reunification of our family because the kids had not been interviewed. After asking her not to yell at me she again raised her voice, my husband was witness to this, and said she had not once raised her voice at me. I handed the phone to my husband and he then lost signal. I called her back, left a message assuring her I didn’t hang up the phone.
    My children went to their forensic interviews at 1:30 Monday afternoon. My grandmother had to call to get the location that was supposed to have been given Friday afternoon. They finally called my Mother in law about an hour and a half before the interview with the location (although my grandmother had relayed the information to her). My grandmother has my two boys and mother in law has our oldest currently. Each child was with the interviewer approx. and hour. My husband and I went to speak with the officer again that (Monday afternoon). It was then we were told to recount details and give a timeline of the past few days. We have four kids, and are pretty busy, but we each recounted details the best we could. The officer informed me in my interview that while Solomon (our four year old) said he gave Pheonna shot he could not do it again in the interview (at which point he also hurt himself in the interview and pricked his own finger) and was using words that four year olds do not using know leading her to believe he was coached. I asked what words, she could not tell me. I asked his pediatrician if she thought he had the ability to get insulin into a needle and while we all believe he can, it’s also not realistic to believe he wasn’t nervous or some other factor, the pediatrician stated that he might not be able to do it on command but she believes he is capable, cognitively. The officer also explained that our timeline was off. Let me elaborate. Our son says he did this while my husband and I were watching a movie the night we made him go to bed before the Spiderman movie was over (this is what he told my mother). This was either Sunday or Monday. She had to of been injected on Tuesday from what I’ve learned about the specific kind of insulin (Lantus-long lasting insulin with onset of 2-3 hours, no peak, last over 24 hours). It is possible that I laid her down upstairs instead of in her rock-n-play downstairs on Tuesday when I put the boys down for their nap. I was very busy Tuesday (working on a deadline for a side project I was helping my mother with) and cannot remember. However, I sent a text to my mom that Solomon had been up and down from his nap (my words were “the boys are not cooperating, go figure). I either never heard a cry or heard her cry out and dismissed it when it didn’t continue. Again, I wasn’t expecting to have to remember and I don’t. So it is very possible his days are mixed up. I hope to get a court order of the tape of the interview however, because my son is very bright and knows words and things that are above his level so it is possible he knows technical terms. We suspect he is on the spectrum as well and are seeking clarification suspecting that he has impulsivity and possible ADHD/Aspergers.
    My husband informed me also that the officer was very inquisitive about my emotional state and asked questions about me. I am working with my midwife who I delivered with at Atlanta Medical Center for a letter attesting to my continued care and emotional state. Also, my mother was with us the majority of the night at her home before Pheonna became sick and she can attest to my emotional state that night. Also, I breastfeed her, and take vitamins and in general care for myself. Like all mothers I get tired and irritable as to be expected. I made mention to the officer that the only thing that really bothered me was that the help I was getting in the beginning fell off with the newness of baby Pheonna (this may just be the way I feel b/c I’m tired, so it’s not a testament to the great support that our family and friends have given us) but other than that I’ve coped pretty good with the adjustment. I have my moments of being over dramatic as every mom does. No questions relating to my husband were really presented to me, but I can assure you he loves his kids. This is the first time I’ve ever seen my husband cry, he misses them so much as well.
    After we were interviewed we returned to Ms. White’s office to sign papers for a friend of ours to take Pheonna for the time being. Earlier that same day Ms. White asked if my Mother in law could take Pheonna and my husband and I felt it would not be best since her sister smokes (outside) and we didn’t want Pheonna exposed. Unlike our 13 year old she cannot walk away and she is still so little. So we signed papers for her to be given to our friend for the time being. In her office she repeated herself to us and spoke to us as though we were infants. She also informed me that I did not want to “speed up court, honey”. This was really when we realized we needed legal representation but we are still fundraising for it at the time this letter is being written.
    Since Monday (it is now Thursday same week) no one has checked on our children. Of course we have but as far as CPS is concerned they do not know how my kids are. I am still not allowed to see our now, 7 week old, to nurse even though what we have officially been accused of is “inadequate supervision” we are still unable to see her supervised. Not one of my children’s caregivers have been given a copy of the safety plan. Not one home inspection has taken place (including our home). No one bothered to call my baby girl’s caregiver to ensure she was brought to her home safely from the hospital. Even after continuing to ask I have not been given any action steps other than to wait. Tomorrow will be one week since this started and ONE WEEK since we have seen our newborn, and our boys are sad and confused and our 13 year old daughter had to change schools just to keep going. I asked about seeking counseling for my four year old who is putting things together and beginning to internalize and blame himself for all of this (he says things that show this is what he is doing as we are not allowed to ask him anything pertaining to this). I was told again to wait. My son cannot wait, he is becoming more aggressive and angrier every day and doesn’t deserve this. I have also tried to contact Ms. White several times to have our Pheonna now placed in my mother in law’s home as the smoking issue has been resolved (and discontinued) and her current caregiver’s son has an acute respiratory virus. She has not returned my calls.
    Since we have not been given any instruction on how to reunify our family and have not been able to raise all funds to afford a lawyer we are reaching out to everyone we can to get help in our situation. We have received numerous letters of character/parenting witness and we have written our own safety plan to ensure an accident like this never occurs again. I will attach those letters and safety plan to this letter. Any intervention you can provide, any resources you can provide, or possible legal assistance is greatly appreciated. And lastly, if you pray, please pray first for my children and the protection of their hearts, souls, emotions, and development through this and secondly for my husband and I as we are barely breathing without our kids!
    Sincerely,
    Jennifer (Speer) and Michael Bennett
    Jennandmichaelbennett@gmail.com
    678-373-9024

    Like

    • gacoalition4childprotectionreform1 says:

      Hi Jennifer, I sent you an email. However, I am not an attorney, but a family rights advocate. I can help you though, you did the right thing by contacting. I pray it will all work out ASAP!!
      Paige Roberts, family rights advocate

      Like

      • sandra smith says:

        Paige, I live in Fairburn Ga,. my daughter has a case in bartow county. DFACStook her daughter two months ago its a long story but im realizing they do this stuff all the time. and are on point leading totaking her parental rights. her courtappointed lawyer has not objected or submitted any defense for my daughter and all the allegations were false she took drug tests at 72 hour hearing and passed and has taken 4 more all negative . they have presented no evidence, i cant get her lawyer to do anything ,because hes her lawyer. . there are so many injustices in this case, its unbelievable. Other lawyers ive told this to say no way or im crazy. but no its true, this system is corrupt, i believe there is a conflict of interest with dfacs and director of family children division and the foster parent are related. my daughter has had no representation and , i ask him to move for dismissal at lasty hearing because they had no evidence…and he wouldnt. its insane. Can you help me. please. 678-545-6748 or shakeserfists@yahoo.com

        Liked by 1 person

  2. gacoalition4childprotectionreform1 says:

    Hey Jennifer, What is going on with your case? We kind of lost track of one another! contact me if you are still dealing with dfcs

    Like

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