50 join NAACP in protest of local DFCS

Tue, 03/18/2008 - 3:58pm
By: Ben Nelms

It was a low-key but emotional event Friday night in front of Fayetteville City Hall as 50 people expressed their concerns with the Fayette County Department of Family and Children’s Services (DFCS) and the Fayette County court system.

And though the downtown area March 14 was uncrowded, the stalwart group assembled at City Hall for the candlelight prayer vigil were determined to have their say.

The event was sponsored by the Fayette County Branch of the NAACP. President Phyllis Blake said the organization was there to support families whose lives have been devastated by the removal of their children by DFCS and placed in foster care by the judicial system.

“We’re here to draw attention to the high percentage of children, especially minority children, removed from their homes and placed in foster care,” Blake said. “We want to inform parents and others that these injustices are being addressed by the local branch and should not be tolerated in Fayette County or across the nation. We are in the fight. We pray that justice will be done.”

One of the speakers Friday was Georgia NAACP President Ed DuBose. Speaking to the audience on the steps of City Hall, DuBose said some parents have problems with Fayette County DFCS, some have problems with the Fayette County court system and others had problems with both.

“What needs to be highlighted here is that there are some children who need to be removed from their homes in the best interest of the child. Even in those cases the child does not win,” DuBose said at the conclusion of the prayer vigil.

“We came here today to say that Fayette County has gone too far with removing children. We want an investigation of the high removal rate and placement in foster care, particularly the high removal rate of African-American children,” DuBose said.

“But we came here today to say any child, black or white, that has been removed needs to be looked at. It’s no secret that we’re standing with (state DFCS employee) Cylenthia Clark. We believe her case has shed light on all of the cases in Fayette County where children are being removed either because first responders are not being trained or they just don’t care and the leadership is not doing a good job,” DuBose said.

“We don’t want to tear the system down. We believe that DFCS is needed to protect children. But there is a right way to do this and they’re not doing it,” DuBose said.

One couple who has issues with the DFACS and the Fayette court system are Kim and Chuck Stone. Their 16-year-old daughter has been in state care for nearly two years after an incident where Chuck smacked her, Kim explained.

“Later on the allegations went to child molestation. We were cleared after an eight-month investigation. We want to get our daughter back,” Kim said. “She’s been lost in the system since May 23, 2006. She is in a group home in (Fulton County) and she has no life. She is allowed to attend school but is allowed no outside activities. She has written a letter to a state senator asking for help. We just want our daughter back.”

Chuck said that DFCS during the investigation had tried to taint their testimony.

“My daughter said that DFCS said we were bashing her and slandering her in court. Our daughter wants to come home. She doesn’t have access to a caseworker,” Chuck added. “We’ve had several different caseworkers in the past two years. The ones that were on her case have either transferred or been fired or went to work somewhere else.”

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Submitted by hazeleyes on Fri, 03/28/2008 - 1:50pm.

I called the child abuse hotline when my daughter was being abused by school district, when a male teacher slammed by diabetic child against lockers, slammed her fingers into lockers where she tests her sugar causing her fingers to be numb for several days. I called child abuse hotline when a man police officer caused a closed head injurie to the back of her head. I called child abuse hotline, when while taking her shot in her stomach, 2 teachers started yelling at her to get out of the designated area she was told to be in, her stomach hardened and she could'nt administer her insulin, but she was suspended for being disrespectful, I called child abuse hotline when my daughers sugar level dropped to 30 while in class, she asked the teacher if she could go get a snack to raise her sugar level, the teacher told her to wait 5 more minutes for the bell to ring. If they were so concerned about child abuse, why was'nt anything ever done to the people who abused my daughter. Maybe it was because it was'nt me.


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