These are the children Jackson County, Ga DFCS are holding hostage.
There are things that you the parent are not told, will not be told and will never know unless you have access to certain material. I have that material. One of the things that you will not be told is that you have the right to have extended family members at any and all of your hearings. They can give valuable insight into your case. Do not allow CPS or the Judge to tell you different. According to “Resources Guidelines Improving Court Practice in Child Abuse and Neglect Cases” printed by the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges you have that right.
“Extended Family Members”
“When relatives either are already actively involved with a child or are interested in caring for a child, their presence can be valuable at a preliminary protective hearing. Relatives can provide essential information about the situation can help protect the child in the home (thus allowing the court to return the child home) and can become the immediate caretaker of the child if necessary. It is helpful for the court to observe the child’s relatives and be able to speak to them directly at the hearing.”
I know for a fact this is not done – When my daughter Alice Samantha Thomason went for her preliminary hearing her grandparents were both there to testify on her behalf. Deidra Sands the guardian ad litem found out that Samantha’s grandparents were waiting to go in to testify and she spoke to Judge Guidry who in turn sent his bailiff out to tell them the courtroom was to small and they were not needed. Deidre knew they had no case.
Under the Section “Other Witnesses” it states:
“It should be remembered that critical decisions affecting the lives of children are made at preliminary protective hearings. While continued placement of a child outside the home prior to adjudication may be essential to a child’s safety, in some cases it also may be unnecessary and traumatic to the child. To ensure careful and informed judicial decisions, the court must make it possible for witnesses to testify at the preliminary protective hearing. When appropriate, the court should be prepared to briefly continue the hearing to allow the testimony of witnesses. …”
Again in Jackson County, Judge Guidry has not allowed this to happen in his courtroom.
The Guidelines also state under “What services will allow the child to remain safely at home?”
To decide whether there are available means to allow a child to be maintained safely at home, the court must be made aware of services available in the community. In neglect cases, for example, emergency homemakers, day care, or in-home-baby- sitters can often eliminate immediate danger to the child. In a wide variety of cases, intensive home- bases services in which professionals spend long periods of time in the home sharply reduce danger to the child.”
Jackson County DFCS did not do this and Judge Guidry did not make it known that it was a requirement.
Also stated in the guideline book- “Has the Agency made reasonable efforts to avoid protective placement of the child?”
“In the connection with the decision to remove a child from home, the court also must determine whether the responsible public agency has made reasonable effort to preserve the family. Upon deciding to remove a child, the court must decide both whether the agency has made reasonable efforts to prevent the need for the child’s removal from home and, whether, within the short time available, the agency has made reasonable effort to make it possible for the child to safely return home. The “reasonable efforts” determination is required by federal law, as a condition for state receipt of federal foster care matching funds. It is also required by statute in most states. ….”
This again was not done by Judge Guidry in the Jackson County Court. It was also not done by anyone at Jackson County DFCS not by the Supervisor Mary Mahoney, Samantha’s former Caseworker Stephanie Smith and not by her current caseworker Katie Bice.
Jackson County, Ga. DFCS and The Piedmont Juvenile Count located in Jackson County Ga. with Judge Guidry presiding have broken everyone of these guidelines. They have railroad Samantha and many more like her simply for the money. They have convoluted the system simply for the money.