Referral has two meanings in Child Protective Services
Referral=When someone calls a CPS hotline and says that they believe a child is being abused.
Referral= An approval and authorization to provide payment to a “service” that is “required” and demanded upon you in order to get your child(ren) back from CPS such as counseling, drug testing and parenting classes.
For this post I will be “referring” to the first REFERRAL I described above.
Who called CPS on you? Was it a family member or close friend?
This is the shittiest type of referral because these are the people who are supposed to be there for you, not feed you to the wolves. If a family member or close friend feels that they are “helping” you by calling CPS on you then they do not deserve to be considered family or close friend. With friends and family like that, you don’t need any enemies. If you are one of those family or friends that have called on someone, I think that if you are here, you are regretting it. It’s OK, at least you are here and most people have no clue as to what they are doing to a family when they make that call. But did you have the BEST intentions? NO you didn’t but still, you are here. The best thing you can do for them now is TAKE BACK WHAT YOU SAID AND DO IT IN COURT AND ON PAPER, SUBMIT IT TO THE JUDGE PERSONALLY. HELP YOUR FAMILY MEMBER OR CLOSE FRIEND AS MUCH AS YOU CAN AND NEVER DO THAT AGAIN!
ANYONE CAN CALL THE CPS HOTLINE and report anything they want regardless of whether they are telling the truth or NOT. A disgruntled neighbor, friend, family member, an ex-spouse or partner, your child’s friend’s mother or father, a complete stranger who witnessed you yelling at your kid in the grocery store and managed to get the phone number you have on your car advertising your business, a jogger passing by your house and hears a loud bang and then the cry of a child (this really happened to a friend of my brother’s. The loud bang was a broomstick falling to the floor and it startled a young child causing them to cry. The broom wasn’t even close to hitting the child.) The person making the “referral” does not have to have proof nor do they ever have to testify! NEVER! Their names are kept secret (unless they call your social worker directly while you have an open case, then this information may be in the case/contact log). No background check for the person’s credibility will be performed and they can be convicted child abusers themselves!
What can you do to avoid the “referral” by someone you know? You certainly can lower the odds by just getting along with people. I wish I would have put more effort into not being a bitch to my husband’s ex-wife that is for sure! I thought I was so much better than her, I looked at her like she was a piece of shit (she was and still is) but I didn’t have to go out of my way to write her that letter telling her so. I had my reasons at the time but golly gee willicker, if I could go back in time, I would kiss that woman’s ass for sure! I had no idea of the evil she was capable of doing. So be kind to your neighbors, ex-spouse or girlfriend, be tolerant of certain personality defects, try your best to be firm but always nice. Don’t piss your mother off (they must rank #4 in the people who call!) and try to get along with your sister. This would not only improve your chances of not being falsely reported, it also strengthens your family bonds and that is positive for everyone.
MANDATED REPORTERS AND OTHER PROFESSIONALS
A lot of calls are from “mandated reporters” who are professionals who can be charged with a crime for failing to report “suspected” child abuse either in criminal or civil court as well as pay a hefty fine and possibly lose their license. I believe that there may be a minimum referral quota but I can not verify that.
Here is a partial list of “Mandated Reporters”:
School Cafeteria Lady/Worker
School Clerk/Office Staff
School Social Worker
Hospital Social Worker
Doctor’s Office Staff
Dental Office Staff
Code Enforcement Officers
Animal Control Officers
Substance Abuse Program Directors, Counselors, Volunteers and Office Staff
Domestic Violence Prevention Program Directors, Counselors, Volunteers and Office Staff
Parenting Class Teacher, Administrator, Volunteers and Office Staff
Anyone who works at Macy’s Department Store (no kidding!)
Utility Workers (like the people that come out to turn on/off your electricity, water or gas)
Refuse Pick-up Drivers
Mail Delivery Persons
ANY PERSON WHO WORKS FOR GOVERNMENT INCLUDING CITY, COUNTY, STATE AND FEDERAL!