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Removing kids for poverty


I’m just throwing this out here as one example, albeit the most recent and aggregious one, of why some people, including me and I get a lot of kickback, object to “foster adopt” and believe the system is rigged to provide cheap adoptable children rather than help poor families.
There are plenty of other examples—Kentucky “fast track adoptions,” Arizona—but this is the one I have access to now.
Whenever I, a FFY, or others talk about issues regarding “foster adopt,” I get the kickback of “but what about abuse” or the worst-case scenarios, as if of course we want kids to be sexually abused or tortured or murdered rather than be adopted.
But so many kids are in foster care for reasons that have to do with poverty, lack of resources, etc.
Which is my take. I want to hear yours. Your honest thoughts. I won’t respond or argue. I just want to know, honestly, if you would be OK “fostering to adopt” kids in this kind of situation.
https://www.npr.org/2019/07/22/744005587/dont-have-your-lunch-money-one-pennsylvania-school-district-threatening-foster-c

Replies

Sounds like that school system needs to go back to the old way of selling lunches for money. Period. Problem solved.

On the other hand if a kid doesn’t have food it is a serious problem. But one where a good school first would step in and either fund the lunch, or give the parents help getting food stamps or other food benefits. They also might see what is going on with the child’s home life. If necessary then call in authorities. Just my take Nora.

Posted by Happy Camper on Aug 03, 2019 at 6:24am

I live in the area and this was a huge deal in our local foster community, everyone was outraged, including the head of the county CYS who blasted the school and said no way would CYS ever remove kids for not paying school lunches. So nope, kids not being removed due to poverty. Plus, the parents who didnt pay the lunches werent poor. It actually happened in a well to do school district and middle to upper class parents were protesting by refusing to pay because a neighboring, poor school district was receiving universal free lunches and they thought it was unfair they had to pay when the other district didnt.So the poor kids were actually receiving help, not being removed. I grew up in a very poor household and my parents constantly warned us that cys was going to take us away because we were poor. We received plenty of help, my parents just wasted it all (trading food stamps for beer money, selling the electric blankets the church gave us when we had no heat, and using the cash for cigarettes, using our cash assistance for gambling, that sort of thing) . We actually should have been removed much sooner than we were. We went without food and heat and electricity and had holes in our shoes andclothes, but we werent removed because they DONT remove kids for being poor. Once my dad went to jail and my mom abandoned us to go do drugs, they finally removed us. And even then they gave us back once my dad was released even though our parents were homeless. A lot of poor families have problems in addition to being poor such as drug abuse or mental illness, and those other problems cause lousy parenting and it means most foster kids do come from poor families. But poverty alone doesnt get kids removed.

Posted by rn4kidz on Aug 03, 2019 at 1:15pm

We’ve adopted 5 kids from FC.
First daughter was coming out of an abusive adoption, not a foster/adopt placement—they weren’t poor. Her birth mom is Native, was addicted.
First son had been in FC for 4-5 years, 7 homes. Dad missing, stepdad abusive, mother strung out on heroin & habitually running up bills & skipping town—they’d been in 38 states byt the time he was 7.
Middle daughters’ mom got her boyfriends from Molesters R Us.  Yes, she was poor. Also bipolar. But not willing to change & kids were being abused by her, molested by BFs.
Last son was so badly abused he’s still (at 28) on the street ranting at his PTSD causing incidents. All parental rights had been terminated when he came. Father later molested stepdaughter, used meth, hanged self.  Mother still using at last report.
Father was welder, not poor, just using all $ for drugs. Mother was poor, probably had FAE herself.
All these kids have some degree of fetal alcohol involvement, and probably some attachment issues—more obvious at some times & in some situations than others.
We have children’s services and court records, kids’ own stories, and have had at least some contact with all the birth families.
Our youngest daughter put it all in perspective: she loves us, she’s glad we’re her parents, she was not safe with her birth mom—but if it had been possible to “fix” birthmom that would have been better.
I agree with that. Adoptive families aren’t 2nd best, but we’re second: at least one other family had to be broken for us to have our kids.
No guilt attached—our kids, at least, were certainly better off with us than with their original families—but it’s important to remember (esp with older kids) that there WERE original families and that, if possible, contact should be maintained unless and until the kids refuse it—they have to come to terms with why they were removed and “get” that we’re not those awful people who stole them from their “real” parents.

Posted by Leslie S. on Aug 05, 2019 at 12:09am

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