Domestic Violence

The System Allowed My Ex to Use Investigations as a Weapon Against Me

In 2009 I aged out of foster care with
my 1 ½ year old son. I had my own apartment, was in college and had a job. But
I was always running late to pick up my son and my rent was always past due. Life
felt overwhelming so I quit college to work. I refused to allow myself to be
homeless.

Advocacy

Surveillance Isn’t Safety – How over-reporting and CPS monitoring stress families and weaken communities

Series Edited by Rachel Blustain, Rise Contributing Editor

This year, Rise will share parents’ perspectives and recommendations for strengthening families without surveillance and through community.

Too often, when families are struggling, school
personnel, doctors and police are quick to call a hotline instead of connecting
us to resources and support.

Nationwide, child abuse and neglect reports grew more than 12% from 2013 to 2017. Abuse scandals across the country and sensational media coverage of child fatalities in many communities put mandated reporters … Read More

Handling Your Case

No Escape – The system failed me as a child but now it won’t leave me alone

As a child I cried out for help to child protective
services. But the system didn’t help me when I was a child, and it hasn’t
helped me as a parent.

Almost as soon as my older son was born, child
protective services came into my life saying my son needed protection from me,
and it has remained in my life to this day. Instead of helping me, it weakened
my family and left me vulnerable. Because of the system, my child lives with anger
and anxiety.  

Adoption

NY State Legislature Passes New Open Adoption Bill to Protect Children’s Family Bonds

Legislators in New York State are considering passing a bill to ensure that children adopted from foster care can continue to have contact with their parents, even when rights are terminated, if it’s in the child’s best interest. Here, Rise’s Sara Werner, who lost her daughter to adoption but reunified with her son, interviews Amy Mulzer, a staff attorney for law and appeals in the Family Defense Practice at Brooklyn Defender Services:

Advocacy

From Rights to Reality: A blueprint for parent advocacy and family-centered child welfare reform

From Rights to Reality  is designed to unite parents and parent advocacy around a common set of goals. It identifies 15 rights for parents affected by the child welfare system. Most parents do not yet have these rights in child welfare proceedings. From Rights to Reality represents a commitment to working in our communities and nationwide to make these rights a reality.

Each right is illustrated by parents’ stories—stories that show how families can be strengthened … Read More