What does everyone think of social services?

Gabrielle - posted on 10/19/2010 ( 96 moms have responded )

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I feel they are a waste of time. I know an alcoholic who leaves their child to fend for themselves. Social services know about it but arent doing anything. I know someone that is abusing her child and mentally abusing him. Again social services know about it but cant see to find anything wrong. I think they dont look hard enough (im not saying all of them are like this). If they go to someones house and see them playing with the child on the floor, they will think that everything is fine. When in fact this could be a put on as they knew that social services were coming out. There are child psychologists that can tell whether this is the usual thing that happens or whether its a put on. Why arent we using them? I think there would be less deaths, rapes (by stepparents) etc if we were using child psychologists instead. What do you think?

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Johnny - posted on 10/19/2010

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To many of them working for the MONEY and not because the truly & passionately want to protect the welfare of children.Period.

Where do you live? I want to move there!!!!!!! I had to give up my dream of being a social worker when I could no longer pay my rent & put food on the table despite working 60 hours a week. I was working for the money. So I could eat. Really, where is this eden?

I'd agree with the majority of the posts on here that burnout is a major issue. I worked for one year in child services (and the rest of the time for non-profits). It was my first year out of university. I had one day a week practicum for a year during school, and with no training, I was dumped into a busy intake office where the managers turned over bi-monthly. In the year I was there, I had 5 different managers and no support, guidance, mentoring or instruction. I did the very best I could, followed the endless regulations (including those which obligated me to make appointments for visits!) and filled out ceaseless paperwork (which took up the huge majority of my time). I left for a lower paying job at a non-profit where I didn't lie up all night worrying about the children I was supposed to be protecting.

A large part of the blame comes from government. They do not fund social services sufficiently. They implement regulation without understand its potential effects. I had to follow a checklist of 250 items for every case, and even if I followed it exactly (which was the rule) if something went wrong and a kid got hurt, it was still my ass on the line, not the bureaucrat who came up with the list.

But by far, the biggest amount of the blame goes to society. Most pretend to give a crap about the kids, but are unwilling to become foster parents, or to pay more taxes to fund the system, or to accept cutbacks in other areas. It seems like most people just like to cry about the newest dead baby on the news and feel all benevolent, and do jack shit about it.

Would changing to child psychologists change anything. I completely do not think so. Until society changes it's priorities and government puts sufficient funding, support, and appropriate legislation into place, child psychologists would be just as impotent as social workers (who generally have as much university training but more practical learning than psychologists).

Sharon - posted on 10/19/2010

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Social Services is a good idea with bad carry out. to many lazy assholes are employed by social services. To many burnouts too.

A lot of counselors WANT to help or wanted to but thanks to wacky written laws, they are powerless.

Unless a doctor, teacher, or officer of the law can definitively say "This is absolutely abuse" most of the time they can't remove the child from the home. Or you need a good strong eye witness plus what they themselves have witnessed.

Frankly - I think doctors and child psychologists should be conscripted into 1 week of work for the govt per 3 months to help out with potential child abuse cases. eh maybe.

Social Services needs to cut out the dead weight, the assholes who do nothing but collect paychecks. They need to take back the company cars and garage them. They need to lock up the company laptops at night. The spending accounts for the kids needs to be more strongly monitored. And counselors need to be rotated out to other positions after a year and then rotated back to prevent burn out and create a checks & balances system.

In my perfect world, thats how it would work.

Johnny - posted on 10/20/2010

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This thread is a great example of why so many social workers are terrible. Because they are angry bitter people who suffered terrible childhoods and grow up to think that they can do a better job. They make the worst, most uncaring, unempathetic, power hungry social workers in my experience.

Just a side note, that $32,000 I mentioned was back in 1998. The wage for that job now would be $41,500. So it has gone up. But given the cost of living here, it would still have been a huge struggle to make ends meet. But I guess if I had "really wanted to help" I would have been happy to give up my home, move to the streets, eat out of trash bins, and default on my student loans. I just don't care that much.

Johnny - posted on 10/20/2010

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Since you think I'm a liar Ashie, hear you go:

http://www.payscale.com/research/CA/Job=...

Yes, you did touch a nerve. I went to school and worked with a fair number of people who had survived rough childhoods and gone into social services swearing that they would do a better job than their own workers. Unless they'd actually done a lot of emotional work to get through those issues, it was usually a mess. My field instructor during my practicum was like that. She hated all men because her father had abused her and a male social worker had not taken action. Not only did she make the lives of every man we encountered a misery, but if she figured that anyone had guessed that she was a lesbian, and disapproved (esp. religious people we encountered) she would immediately send them for parenting classes & counseling, regardless of whether there was any signs of a problem. She'd fight against fathers having custody, even when it was clear that they were the best caregiver. So yeah, when I see people emotionally attacking social workers on the basis of how we don't care and we're just in it for the money and we don't really know what it's like, it really pisses me off because it's generally complete and total bullshit.

[deleted account]

I grew up a foster child. I had some terrific social workers and some not so great ones. They are definitely over worked and underpaid. The bad ones need to find new careers and the good ones don't have the resources and enough help to do their jobs properly. I think the system is flawed but it is much better now than it was when I was in the system. I think it needs to be fixed for sure, and I definitely think it's better than having no system in place at all. The problem is, in my opinion, that it's a really tough and underappreciated job that few want to do. This causes a shortness in staff basically, while the number of children in need continues to grow. I think one way to solve the problem is to pay them more. It always strikes me as ironic that the people who are responsible for our children the most (besides us) like teachers and social workers are some of the lowest paid people in our country. I remember reading somewhere that a fast food restaurant manager makes more than an elementary school teacher. Not that there's anything wrong with being a fast food manager (just to clarify). But to make more than the person who is helping shape our children's minds???? Ummm, not cool.

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Alexandra - posted on 07/02/2011

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I remember when i had my baby my blood pressure was through the roof. I was supposed to take nine pills at different times during the day. Well on one particularly hectic day i lost track of my doses and took to many, needless to say i ended up in the ER because my BP tanked. Somewhere along the way i dont know if it was the EMS, doctors, or nurses but someone through the word suicide into the mix and the shit hit the fan. They sent cops to my house to look for drugs, DCF (department of children and families) told me my mother had to stay with my son till they could deem me a fit parent AND they put me in a mental health ward and i had to wait the entire weekend before i could see a shrink so i could go home. And even then the social worker said to me that just because i convinced a therapist that i wasnt suicidal that hes not sure i should get my son back. An entire week went by before he decided to show his lazy ass around my house to "inspect it" and all he did was sit in my kitchen and interogate me. In the end he knew there was nothing he could do. He did say before he left that if DCF is ever involved in my family again he will personally make sure that my sons custody is taken from me. All that man power and tax money wasted instead of just looking into the actual records and seeing that no one in my family eveer mentioned the word suicide. It came from them. How does that help anyone, all it does is put the fear of god into parents that the govt will take there kids away if they sneeze the wrong way.

[deleted account]

"Jennifer i also live in the UK. Psychologists can spot unusual behaviour and like you said they cant be certain what has caused it. However, if a parent and child are playing on the floor and the parent goes to reach for something behind the child and he/she flinches, moves away or looks scared. Then the chances are that that child is being hit off the parent which is against the law."

Actually hitting isn't against the law. It is only considered a crime it if leaves a mark. I flinch all the time for loads of think such as if my husbands going to do a silly face at me...me flinching doesn't mean he hits me.

[deleted account]

Heehee, we're funny! I wonder what Gabrielle is going to say when she comes back 8 days from now?

Mary - posted on 11/14/2010

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Oh - and to Gabrielle's suggestion that child psychologists do the job of social workers - good luck finding enough of them willing to do that job for what they currently pay social workers. I'm not slamming them by any means, but I doubt they'd be willing to trade their current work environment (they don't, or rarely, do home visits), hours, and case loads for that of the average social workers...and all for less pay. Somehow, I doubt there will be many of them lining up for the "opportunity".

Mary - posted on 11/14/2010

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Carol is absolutely right. I do not pretend to be an expert on Social Workers, but I can attest to the fact that those who work in Baltimore area hospitals are severely overworked, and grossly underpaid. Frankly, I don't understand how anyone can claim they go into it for the money. Our social workers are required to have a master's degree just for an entry level position at my hospital. They work an ungodly number of hours for less money than nursing, and the demands and expectations on them are just insane. I have always liked each one I've ever encountered, but learned not to get too attached to them - the turnover rate is (understandably) pretty high, and let's be honest, everyone and their brother feels free to criticize them for "not doing enough", while never seeing or acknowledging just how limited their resources are.

[deleted account]

Nah! If I did that, then I'd have to point out that your sentence should have read, "I can totally see you doing that, (

[deleted account]

Someone should start another grammar thread. Call it "Grow up, stupid." VS "Grow up stupid."

Dana - posted on 11/13/2010

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Yes, she forgot her comma. Grow up, stupid - would be directed at you. Grow up stupid is a statement.....talk about stupid.

Krista - posted on 11/13/2010

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She didn't call you stupid. She told you to grow up stupid. I'm sure growing up stupid is what your parents aimed for.

[deleted account]

Dana:), what's even better than her calling you stupid? Her taking ELEVEN DAYS to do it ROFL!

Lacye - posted on 11/13/2010

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You are so right about that Amanda. One group of people can't save all the children. the whole community should get involved and help stop the violence against the kids.

Amanda - posted on 11/13/2010

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I think yes they are overworked, but no I don't think they are doing their job. It disgusts me to see the abuse some of these children are going through. And it's never brought up until AFTER the fact of something bad happening. It annoys me that people aren't able to do their jobs, and children are suffering, but not just one group of people can save all the children. There definetly needs to be higher pay and more positions so there will be more people caring about doing their job right and not about money.

Lacye - posted on 11/13/2010

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When I decided to go back to college, I was looking at 2 majors that I was thinking about going at, Accounting and Social Work. I talked to a couple social workers and what I found out was horrible. They don't make very much money, they are severely understaffed (due to the recession right now), and they just don't have much time to go out and get every single person who is abusing their child. They may want to, but they can't. I think each person has a butt load of files that they have to look at and do paperwork on and go out to investigate. There is only so much they can do. I'm not saying it's right or fair because the kids are the true victims, but unfortunately it is a reality. And the government is not hiring social workers right now because there is not enough money. Maybe in the future that will change but for right now, most of the social workers are trying as hard as they can to get to the kids, they just can't.

[deleted account]

You better be nice, Ashley, or Gabrielle won't let you post on HER thread.

WOW! Look at the maturity on me! Just another way I enjoy "gettin' down"....LMFAO!

[deleted account]

True looks like it.- but what you said ,it was funny Dana:-)..look at Carol, Sara and myself getting down big time..its how we roll for sure.:-)nothing like a good debate.

[deleted account]

EXACTLY, Ashley - FUNNY, right? Gabrielle got her knickerbockers in a knot for nothin'. *giggles*

[deleted account]

No one is "slating" anyone else, Gabrielle. This is a debate. We're supposed to argue back and forth. It's how we get down!

I love it..its how we get down lmao :-)nice one

[deleted account]

"Was i talking to you dana? No! Im was saying everyone has a right to their opinion. If you cant handle that then stop posting on my conversation."

YOUR conversation? LMFAO! On a public debate forum. Were you talking to me? I don't know - you were talking to EVERYONE as far as I'm concerned because it's a PUBLIC forum. You're right, everyone does have a right to their opinion, including ME, so if you don't like it, then you can close YOUR thread.

Besides, it was a joke but apparently SOMEONE doesn't have a sense of humour. ACK!

Cyndel - posted on 11/02/2010

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I know of three stories that make me mad.
One was a case of abuse in which the social services never got involved.
another where the baby had a bone disease and the social services took the child away for abuse, the child had miniscule fractures all over her body, with out seeing if there was a medical reason for her fractures as there were no surface bruses. Mother had to get a doc to look at all the medical records to get the diagnosis. the mother won't get the child back until it is around a year old. the baby was taken away at 5 weeks and given to the father who abandoned them when he found out his girlfriend was prego.
The last one the child was taken away for 48 hours because the parents decided against Vac. the child because of family history of severe reactions to the vac. School complained and the child was taken and given the vac (under the supervision of 6 doctors there for admitting there was a strong possiblility of reaction) against the parents wishes and the families doctors advise (who had cared for the whole family up to grandparents for years).
They are good in some cases, but the consintrate to much on rediculousness.

Stifler's - posted on 11/02/2010

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It takes them a long time to do anything and I have to claim ignorance really as I've only dealt with them once to report someone else. There are probably a lot of issues if they take someone's child away and there probably aren't an abundance of foster homes for kids to go to either.

Sal - posted on 11/01/2010

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over worked and underresoursed.....too many do gooders saying oh don;t take the kids, it has got to a point where they get so much flack for going into places to fix problems only to get told that families should stay together, parents should have access, you can't take kids out of a home and when it goes wrong they are in the shit for that too, they knew and done nothing.....i don't have anything to do with them my self but with my husbands job in a very small (i mean 300 people) i know both side of things and i feel that people have stopped taking responsibility for themselves and their actions thinking that social services or docs as they are here in aus will fix it or stop it....docs doesn't kill rape and abuse kids -killers rapest and abusers do that...

Leah - posted on 11/01/2010

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Wow, I don't know why I do this to myself but I forgot about the Baby P case and googled it. Makes my heart break into a thousand pieces. I don't have any personal experience in social services at all but just have to extend my thanks to those that work in that field. Must be extremely difficult to feel powerless to stop child abuse even when you know its happening and are restricted by red tape. I'm at work writing this and keep looking at the pictures of my little sweeties and feel sad that I cannot do more. We would love to take in at least 1 or 2 foster children but not too sure if we have the space or time necessary for them. Maybe I'll re visit this subject with my husband. Perhaps we can help change the lives of a couple of children, it would be better than sitting around thinking 'what can we do?'.

Lyndsay - posted on 11/01/2010

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ALSO.

Right now I'm working for an agency that runs group homes and foster homes for kids involved with social services, and I must say that C.A.S provides very well for these kids. They get money for clothes every month, all of their medical expenses are covered (including braces, if necessary), and they are offered therapy programs which are meant to be fun and therapeutic. People tend to look down on social services but I think that we should try to see them as wanting to help, and accept what they have to offer.

Lyndsay - posted on 11/01/2010

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I think the system itself is excellent, the problem is the workers. You get people who are coming in every day for a pay check, and they don't really give a damn either way what happens to these kids.. when they go home in the evening, they've forgotten all about it. These are the workers who will come in, give a cursory glance, and declare everything is okay... even if it really isn't.

For example, there was a case here in the last couple of years where a woman and her two kids were living with the woman's boyfriend and his mother. The boyfriend had a daughter from a previous relationship who was treated fine, but the woman's two children were locked in the basement in a urine soaked closet with tattered mattresses and blood on the walls. Social services were involved with the boyfriend and his daughter, but they weren't even aware of the woman and her kids. The worker came for a home visit one day and said everything was fine... later that afternoon one of the two boys in the basement called the cops, who arrived and saved the kids. Shit like this just makes me sick. Like this worker was obviously completely incompetent, she did not do her job AT ALL and I think she should be fired and never allowed to work for social services again. I'm applying for a job with the Children's Aid Society which will start in January.. hopefully I get it, because I will actually do my job!

Gabrielle - posted on 11/01/2010

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Was i talking to you dana? No! Im was saying everyone has a right to their opinion. If you cant handle that then stop posting on my conversation.

Lucy - posted on 10/25/2010

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slating is a usually British term which means "having a go at" or unfairly criticising someone eg, if a film were to get a very bad review it has been "slated" by the critics :)

[deleted account]

No one is "slating" anyone else, Gabrielle. This is a debate. We're supposed to argue back and forth. It's how we get down!

Gabrielle - posted on 10/24/2010

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Everyone is entitled to their opinions, that is why i posted this. I dont want people slating others for what they have said as everyone has a right to think what they want. I dont believe for one moment that all social workers are the same. Some however (in my opinion) dont care about the families they are splitting up, the children that are getting hurt etc. I just wish that they all cared about their jobs and the people they could be helping. Things would be better if they all were as passionate as you carol.

Kayle - posted on 10/21/2010

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I definetly think they it's flawed. I see kids being abused, talked down to, drugs done in front of them, living in dirty houses and being put in dangerous situations and nothing done. No they are more worried about the kids who have good parents and they have an accident (fall bust there lip open, fall and cut there head, ya know kinds of accidents little kids have) and are taken to the ER. It's horrible that you have to be scared to take your kid to the ER because your afraid they are gonna get social services involved. It makes me wonder how many kids are not getting the medical attention they need because of this. Sorry if this repeats someone elses post didn't read them before I posted.

[deleted account]

Its the power hungry ones I hate. Even though there is a lot of stuff they need to do to terminate rights they can still mess your world up without taking your kids. They left my case open the whole time my custody ordeal was going on because the director is friends with my exes wife. They couldn't substantiate anything but they made it a point to stop by quite often because she was convinced they would find something going on.

[deleted account]

I thinks its horrible the way they have the foster system set up and they need to allow more good people to do foster care. Where I live if I were to try and get a foster child in my home, they would look at me and laugh. But let a woman who has no kids take in a foster child and she loses her patients and beats the kid nearly to death. All because my hubby has a record for THEFT, not any kind of abuse or assault. Come to find out this woman saw a counselor for many years as a child for anger and aggression problems. They do a background check instead of a psychological evaluation, why not do both.

[deleted account]

Carol i dont know you and i have never said your a liar my comments are based on my view were i live and the social workers i have dealt with & what i know now about there pay..yes pay cuts have been given now were in recession.

I in no way went out of my way to offend you both .I am not dumb to think all social workers are the same.I know many are fantastic ,hard working people, you are probably one yourself.

I admire those Who have made a difference in children's lives.There is a fantastic side of this as well as a bad side.If you work and are barely getting by i do feel for you& can understand why social workers are not picking up on vital signs etc from being over worked and stressed out.Of course its not fair and very sad for the children who go without help.



Don't take it so personally carol.....I'm sorry you love your work but you dont get paid enough to do it.I understand what everybody has said but i wont apologize for what i have said because thats the other side of it and if you cant handle it i do apologize for that.I am sorry if i have offended anyone but i am entitled to my opinion without others getting all defensive over it...Thanks :-)

More pay is needed for the hard working and understanding social workers to ensure children are removed from dangerous home situations and replaced in GOOD healthy foster homes..

Elizabeth - posted on 10/21/2010

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A lot of times social services do in home counseling, offer help etc without removing the child. If the person has a good attorney the judge can over ride social services decision.

Johnny - posted on 10/20/2010

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Just to add that the majority of social workers here have completed a 4 year bachelor's degree and then a 2 year social work degree. Six years of school also makes for fairly hefty student loan repayments.

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