December 20, 2013
by Diana Winslow
Concerned parents were elated this week when a much awaited segue for them to speak came forward as an invitation from the federal government, asking for clarifications on identified problems with child human rights in court, family rights in court and the lack of a uniform structure to respond to child sex abuse investigations, child abuse investigations and placement of children with a parent who is not known to them, has committed crimes against the other parent or is convicted of crimes that put the child at risk in their care.
Following a march on Washington DC and a Congressional Briefing this Summer members of Congress heard and were concerned about the severity and frequency with which child custody issues are mishandled, to the point of injury to the child or protesting parent. It is remarkable that BOTH events happened despite the sequester, AND that these actions generated interest and an invitation.
Some cases are so problematic, as with the classic case illustrated in the October 2012 Documentary of Holly Collins, called “No Way Out But One“, that the parent is forced to flee the situation, due to deafness in authorities, investigators, systems system law and policy, court law and policy, and court systems. Succinctly, the definition of being run into the ground by such system based problems is called “Systems Induced Trauma.” Beyond victimization in a specific social or family situation, the family, one or all members are further agitated, abused or traumatized by the applied services and policies of systems that interlock without oversight, basically trapping the persons perpetuating a complaint without safety and resolutions.
The US Department of Justice is ready now to consider cases of chaos caused by State child and family courts. USDOJ is calling for child custody outlines in a format. The purpose of providing the outline is for the writer to simply and systematically give structured information regarding the problem case in question.
The US Department of Justice wants timelines of these outrageous cases.
Just complete and send your case in this format to: Mary Seguin firstname.lastname@example.org by January 15, 2014 so she can provide them to the DOJ. The USDOJ invitation was issued to the representing group at the Summer March and Congressional Briefing: The California Protective Parents Association.
(Update 1/6/14: The original notice regarding requested timelines is from the California Protective Parents Association November 2013 Newsletter which says: “Please send the timeline to email@example.com so we can forward them in a group to DOJ.” Some parents are sending copies of the case timelines – first received and time stamped at local DOJ offices – via certified mail to: U.S. Department of Justice 950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW Washington, DC 20530-0001.
The email address “firstname.lastname@example.org” noted in the Examiner article above is for those interested in joining a complaint filed in United States District Court, District of Massachusetts. Please see the CPPA November 2013 newsletter for more information. – Julia )
Format for the Letter to the USDOJ
Who you are
1. Contact information:
4. Former employment:
5. Criminal record (arrests and convictions):
Who your former partner/husband/wife is
3. Former employment:
4. Criminal record (arrests and convictions):
Reports of physical or sexual assault/battery and/or incest
1. Law enforcement (give name of office and address):
Date, Name and title of officer, Outcome of investigation and report:Child Protective Services (give name of office and address):
2. Social worker/Counselor/Other:
Date, Name and title of worker, Outcome (including not reporting to criminal authorities to investigate):
3. Court personnel (give title and address):
Date, Name and title of professional, Outcome(including not reporting to criminal authorities to investigate):
4. Other offices/individuals:
Date, Name and title of professional, Outcome (including not reporting to criminal authorities to investigate):
Intimidation against you that deterred you from reporting
1. Who intimidated you:
2. How were you intimidated:
1. Who gave you a gag order (name, title, date, place):
2. Rationale given for gag order to not talk about these recurring crimes of incest and assault and battery:
3. Removal of child(ren) from you after you reported criminal physical or sexual assault/battery and/or incest:
Response from Social Services
1. Name and title of person(s), recommendations for investigation/ removal/ supervision:
2. Date of recommendation and where recommendation was filed:
3. Name and title of person ordering removal of children (if removal was ordered) :
4. Date of order and where order was filed:
1. Name and title of person recommending supervised visits:
2. Reason given for recommendation:
3. Name and title of person who ordered supervised visits:
4. Date and place order was made:
5. Name of specific visitation center you were ordered to attend:
6. Amount of fees:
7. Dates and times you were ordered to attend:
8. If you were not ordered to a specific visitation center, name of visitation center you chose:
9. Was this center paid by the county:
Motions you filed for relief
1. Date and place filed:
2. Who filed the motion:
3. What lawyers were involved:
4. Outcome of the motion:
*At the end of the time line, please provide note: “Supporting evidence is being compiled in exhibits.”
Parents in and out of CPS courts and family/divorce courts face a hamster wheel of demands, which beyond the direct trauma to the family, often exhaust financial and emotional resources, cost jobs and personal assets. Most everyone knows at least ONE case like this. Please pass this article along to others who might be affected.