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  1. #76
    Senior Member Smallwheels's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rowan View Post
    Child welfare agencies have a lot of power. Are you an attorney who deals in family and child welfare law?
    Nope. I'm a citizen of the USA who has read the Constitution of The United States of America many times, and I'm not stupid.

    We are not subjects here, or so the document proclaims.

    The question asking if I'm an attorney is very insulting to me. When people throw up such statements it is an attack on the person. Legal knowledge isn't hidden from everybody only to be spoken by those anointed with degrees in the subject. This goes for all professions. We aren't little unprogrammed robots roaming around waiting for instructions from our masters. We have intelligence. We think. We create. We work, we observe, and we all have experiences in life that allow us to grow and thrive. Just because someone doesn't have a degree in something doesn't mean they don't know anything.

    The people who can produce results are the ones we need to be listening to, not the do nothing non-producers with numerous letters behind their names. Often I witness common sense and logic being put aside by governments listening to people with degrees. It's really annoying. The case of this social worker in this situation is a prime example.
    Smallwheels

    Take my stuff, please. I have way too much. My current goal is to have all of my possessions fit onto a large bicycle trailer. Really.

  2. #77
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    Oh snap

  3. #78
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smallwheels View Post
    Just because someone doesn't have a degree in something doesn't mean they don't know anything.
    No ... but not having a particular degree might mean that someone doesn't know anything about a specific area ... subject matter ... topic.


    If you don't have a medical degree ... I don't want you performing surgery on me. No matter how much "life experience" you think you have.

  4. #79
    Sophomoric Member Roody's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
    How would your CPS friend view an emergency plan that is based on taking a sick child to a hospital by bike trailer for a 4 hour trip, especially since emergencies don't always occur in bright sunshine hours or during ideal weather conditions? I believe it gets rather cold in upstate NY, get a bit of snow too. Gets dark at night too. Doubt if there are too many car free bike trails available for such a journey.
    There's another thing I missed. The OP never asserted that it was his plan to take the kid by bike, and I don't believe anybody else did either. (I said, very much tongue-in-cheek, that using a bike was as foolish as using a car.)

    Medical professionals reccommend that if there is a serious medical emergency, the emergency response system should be activated, rather than trying to transport the victim to the hospital by car, bike, or pony carriage. That's what makes this notion that the OP's carfree status endangers the child seem rather silly.


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  5. #80
    Senior Member Smallwheels's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Machka View Post
    No ... but not having a particular degree might mean that someone doesn't know anything about a specific area ... subject matter ... topic.

    If you don't have a medical degree ... I don't want you performing surgery on me. No matter how much "life experience" you think you have.
    You are right with that first sentence. Nope I'm not a doctor and wouldn't attempt to operate on anybody though I did get some medical knowledge at a few of my jobs. I know about sterilization, I know about CPR, I know how to handle dislocated joints. I know about medical billing, I know about legal minimum care requirements, I know about many medications and how quite a few of them are pushed by the medical profession solely for the profits they bring even though older medications are as good or better. I don't have a medical degre but I know enough to choose a good doctor and recognize a bad one.

    I have had some fundamental law courses but even those aren't necessary for me to see that the case worker in this situation is overstepping her authority and is making irrational assumptions. If this case ever gets to court I would love to hear her boss and perhaps a judge read the riot act to her and tell her to get her head on straight. She just cost her county some money due to her lack of knowledge about citizens rights; and of course since she is a state case worker in child welfare she has a degree. Degrees don't prove people are smart or have sense.
    Last edited by Smallwheels; 08-01-14 at 07:38 PM.
    Smallwheels

    Take my stuff, please. I have way too much. My current goal is to have all of my possessions fit onto a large bicycle trailer. Really.

  6. #81
    Sophomoric Member Roody's Avatar
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    BTW, I once drove myself to the hospital while I was having a heart attack. I made it OK, obviously. But the doctor pointed out that if I had passed out while driving the car, they would be treating me for traumatic injuries and the heart attack at the same time, and my chancew would not be good. Also, if it had been a worse heart attack, the paramedics would have had me on an EKG, started an IV and O2, and administered life-saving drugs before we even arrived at the hospital.


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  7. #82
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roody View Post
    BTW, I once drove myself to the hospital while I was having a heart attack.
    Yikes! I'm glad you survived Roody! I've been to the hospital a few times now for an apparent heart attack. But in spite of the symptoms (shortness of breath, dizzy, sweating, crushing pressure in my chest) they ultimately decided it was not a heart attack. They were never sure what it was but decided it had to do with neurological after effects of a head injury I had in 1996. I've had a few of these episodes. The last one was a few years ago.

  8. #83
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    Quote Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
    Hell yeah indeed. If those stinkin' child welfare agencies want to make sure that a child in a non relative's temporary custody gets vaccinations, goes to school, has a decent home environment, and/or has a guardian willing and capable of making financial and time sacrifices for the child's welfare as well as having a credible plan for transporting the child for medical services and emergencies, sic the ideological junkyard dogs on 'em barking about "moral rights" and "principled stand on important issues."
    Seems a rather evasive response. A lot of sound and fury signifying nothing. The real question at hand regarding a 'credible plan for transporting the child ....' is whether or not the State has the right to compel a private citizen to demonstrate that they have one. You seem to suggest you believe that should be the case, but perhaps can't quite bring yourself to go that far. So we're treated to meaningless junkyard dog rhetoric instead.

  9. #84
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roody View Post
    BTW, I once drove myself to the hospital while I was having a heart attack. I made it OK, obviously. But the doctor pointed out that if I had passed out while driving the car, they would be treating me for traumatic injuries and the heart attack at the same time, and my chancew would not be good.
    Glad you made it through that, but it does sound very high risk.

    A friend suffered a heart attack shortly after one of our club rides as he was riding home. Got chest pains when less than a block from home and called 911 rather than try to make it there. Fortunately the local EMT response time was much better than the OPs since the recorded time from his call until they cleared the blockage with surgery was just under an hour. He did pass out during the ambulance ride and the EMT used a defibrillator to bring him back.

  10. #85
    Been Around Awhile I-Like-To-Bike's Avatar
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    Given that the OP mentioned that he has purchased a car and a lawsuit is/may be in play, I don't expect him to provide all details to the audience. My only question would be what damages could he claim, and more specifically what would be the most favorable outcome expected?

    I propose a theoretical lawsuit (or formal complaint) with an imaginary plaintiff, Mr. Smith, based on the original scenario, but with the plaintiff's case consisting of the arguments, advice and suggestions proposed by LCF posters on this thread.

    The imaginary scenario:
    Mr. Smith is legal guardian of a 9 year old for the single military parent serving overseas.
    The Social Services agency received a child endangerment report about the child and guardian riding bicycles and sent a caseworker to investigate.

    The caseworker found that the child's bike riding was not a problem but became concerned when Mr. Smith said that he does not currently possess a motor vehicle. He said he got rid of it because he got tired of paying for the insurance.

    The residence is remote and according to the caseworker, emergency services appear to be too distant to meet minimal response time for emergency and Mr. Smith is placing the child in extreme danger by refusing to come up with a suitable plan for emergency transportation of the dependent child. The caseworker strongly recommended that Mr. Smith resolve this issue by obtaining a motor vehicle or getting reliable access to motorized transport, or provide a suitable alternative plan as to how he would provide for emergency care for the child.

    Mr. Smith stated he saw no reason for any government agency to interfere with his care of the child and everything was just fine as is.

    He provided the following further reasons for not obtaining a car or suitable means to meet minimal emergency response time:

    [Note: These "reasons" were derived from responses and advice on this thread and are not meant to imply that the OP said any of this to the caseworker or even thinks they are valid arguments. This is a theoretical scenario meant for LCF discussion only]

    1. With an epidemic of obesity-related diseases now rampant among our youth, almost all of them caused by living a sedentary lifestyle, it should be clear to even the most obtuse person that it is the act of transporting children in cars that is child abuse.

    2. The vast majority of the town is morbidly obese.

    3. With automobiles being the leading cause of death for children in this country, taking a child anywhere in an automobile could be considered reckless endangerment.

    4. All I need to do is dial 911 and whatever time it takes, is good enough.

    5. The caseworker is only present because somebody is harassing me because I get around town by bicycle.

    6. I don't have a car because I don't have to.

    7. I won't give in to government stupidity. This is a matter of personal integrity and reputation. I won't let any government agency impugn me. This is a slippery slope to slave status for all of us. By fighting this and winning it I will make the government agencies involved think twice about doing this to another family.

    8. The Federal government promotes annual National Walk or Bike To Work Days. What about the Presidents Council On Fitness, Sports, & Nutrition.

    9. The government agencies have no moral right to interfere. And if they have the legal right, somebody should yank it away and tell them they're misusing their power.

    10. Other towns provide faster emergency response times to other remote areas.

    11. I'm going to talk to my elected representative about this!

    12. I just don't appreciate being forced to do things.

    13. I'm putting the money saved (by not owning a car) into a college fund for the child.

    14. If I have to drive the child for 60 minutes to get them to a hospital ED, I might as well take her on a bike. She'll probably either way!

    15. I think taking a principled stand on important issues is a sign of home where a child's welfare is less likely to be imperiled.

    16. No matter what the caseworker thinks, a private automobile is not a good option for medical emergencies.

    Mr. Smith filed a formal complaint on the caseworker and her supervisor and is suing a government agency responsible for children welfare in Mr. Smith's location.

    Discussion: Given the imaginary scenario above and the reasons provided for Mr. Smith's actions, how do you think a judge or jury would respond?

  11. #86
    rugged individualist wphamilton's Avatar
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    The "theoretical" lawsuit is more conjectural than I'd like, for argument's sake.

    OP told us that the complaint was about not owning a car, and it would go away if he purchased one. I didn't see anything at all about emergency services, or having a plan to provide emergency transportation.

    OP only mentioned emergency services hypothetically, because he could make no sense of what the case worker told him. Everything subsequent to that is speculation. We don't know that it has anything whatsoever to do with this investigation.

    That the complaint, as communicated by the case worker to OP and by him to us makes no sense is what makes me cautious about the whole situation. My instinct is that something is being held back - that's why I advised to buy a car, and to cooperate and compromise to get this situation behind him. And only then confront them head on, if that's still desirable.

  12. #87
    Been Around Awhile I-Like-To-Bike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wphamilton View Post
    That the complaint, as communicated by the case worker to OP and by him to us makes no sense is what makes me cautious about the whole situation. My instinct is that something is being held back - that's why I advised to buy a car, and to cooperate and compromise to get this situation behind him. And only then confront them head on, if that's still desirable.
    I believe that your instincts are good and that your advice was sound. The same cannot be said about much of the rest of the comments and advice provided by others that made even less sense or were totally in left field.

    I do think in the OP's case the original child abuse complaint about bicycling may have been unwarranted, but a complaint was made and presumably by law had to be investigated. The bicycling issue was probably dropped early due to lack of evidence, but once it was revealed that the "extreme danger" of lack of a means to deal with a health emergency, the case took a totally different turn.

  13. #88
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    Think this thread has jumped the shark for me at this point

  14. #89
    Sophomoric Member Roody's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TinkerinWstuff View Post
    Think this thread has jumped the shark for me at this point
    Ditto. It's hard to have a sane discussion when one participant is just making stuff up!


    "Think Outside the Cage"

  15. #90
    Senior Member MikeRides's Avatar
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    Hey guys, I just wanted to give an update if theres anyone following this thread from the beginning. I received a letter earlier this week indicating that after the investigations I was found not guilty to abuse/neglect of the child and that the case has been closed. Additionally, the lawsuit against the caseworker and supervisor for discrimination and harassment, will go before a judge on September 11th. I'm not expecting much of a settlement, except maybe my legal fees being paid and getting these two dimwits fired (far-fetched I know).
    "Just ride it until the wheels fall off!"

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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeRides View Post
    Hey guys, I just wanted to give an update if theres anyone following this thread from the beginning. I received a letter earlier this week indicating that after the investigations I was found not guilty to abuse/neglect of the child and that the case has been closed. Additionally, the lawsuit against the caseworker and supervisor for discrimination and harassment, will go before a judge on September 11th. I'm not expecting much of a settlement, except maybe my legal fees being paid and getting these two dimwits fired (far-fetched I know).
    'Tis a pity, but you're probably correct that this lawsuit will not result in any incompetent dimwit losing a job. However, it may derail their career a bit, which is a good thing.

  17. #92
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeRides View Post
    Hey guys, I just wanted to give an update if theres anyone following this thread from the beginning. I received a letter earlier this week indicating that after the investigations I was found not guilty to abuse/neglect of the child and that the case has been closed. Additionally, the lawsuit against the caseworker and supervisor for discrimination and harassment, will go before a judge on September 11th. I'm not expecting much of a settlement, except maybe my legal fees being paid and getting these two dimwits fired (far-fetched I know).
    I hope the law suit gets thrown out.

    What you seem to have missed here is that the caseworker was acting on a complaint lodged by someone in your community (the school). When a report like that is lodged, the agency is obligated to investigate. There is no requirement for the caseworker to take what you say at face value. And what sort of discrimination and harrassment are we talking about? Did the letter actually say "not guilty" because I thought only a court of law was able to delivery that sort of "verdict"? I would have thought the investigators would have stated "no case to answer".

    You have a positive outcome from the agency. Why pursue this any further with the law suits? As you stated in your second post, the law suit against the agency staffers is unlikely to go anywhere. The lawyer will be the only winner. And then there is the law suit against the school board. What is going to happen there? You alienate yourself even more in a community environment that your daughter has to attend every day? I'd just wave the letter from the investigators in the face of the school principal, and say it's a done deal, now let's get on with our lives.

    I also hope you have savings to ensure that you can pay his bills and those of the caseworker and the school board.
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  18. #93
    Been Around Awhile I-Like-To-Bike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rowan View Post
    Did the letter actually say "not guilty" because I thought only a court of law was able to delivery that sort of "verdict"? I would have thought the investigators would have stated "no case to answer".
    I think the typical wording for such a letter is something along the lines of "the allegations of abuse were investigated and the finding is that the allegation(s) of abuse were unfounded."

  19. #94
    Sophomoric Member Roody's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeRides View Post
    Hey guys, I just wanted to give an update if theres anyone following this thread from the beginning. I received a letter earlier this week indicating that after the investigations I was found not guilty to abuse/neglect of the child and that the case has been closed. Additionally, the lawsuit against the caseworker and supervisor for discrimination and harassment, will go before a judge on September 11th. I'm not expecting much of a settlement, except maybe my legal fees being paid and getting these two dimwits fired (far-fetched I know).
    I'm glad that it's working out this way. Personally, I would rather not see the workers fired. I would rather see the agency required to restate policies regarding car ownership as grounds for suspecting abuse.


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  20. #95
    Been Around Awhile I-Like-To-Bike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roody View Post
    I'm glad that it's working out this way. Personally, I would rather not see the workers fired. I would rather see the agency required to restate policies regarding car ownership as grounds for suspecting abuse.
    Though it was never made clear by the OP, wasn't the investigation initiated as a result of allegations that the child was being endangered by riding a bicycle on busy highways, and not car ownership? Suspicion of a lack of any apparent planning for how to promptly handle emergencies may have been a result of facts uncovered during the initial investigation.

  21. #96
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    Quote Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
    Though it was never made clear by the OP, wasn't the investigation initiated as a result of allegations that the child was being endangered by riding a bicycle on busy highways, and not car ownership? Suspicion of a lack of any apparent planning for how to promptly handle emergencies may have been a result of facts uncovered during the initial investigation.
    You sure seem to like to speculate about 'facts not in evidence.' The only thing we have to go on are the statements by the OP who said: "She doesn't ride by herself and always rides in front or to the right of me depending on where we ride. The most traffic we see on our local roads are animals and tractors." No mention of busy highways, nor lack of emergency planning by the OP, etc.

    Clearly we don't have any way of judging the veracity of the OP, but that's no excuse to claim the real scenario is one that is clearly contradicted by his statements.

  22. #97
    Been Around Awhile I-Like-To-Bike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by prathmann View Post
    You sure seem to like to speculate about 'facts not in evidence.' The only thing we have to go on are the statements by the OP who said: "She doesn't ride by herself and always rides in front or to the right of me depending on where we ride. The most traffic we see on our local roads are animals and tractors." No mention of busy highways, nor lack of emergency planning by the OP, etc.

    Clearly we don't have any way of judging the veracity of the OP, but that's no excuse to claim the real scenario is one that is clearly contradicted by his statements.
    You are correct we have no idea what the original allegation was, only that the OP first said the school or somebody at the school made a complaint, later I believe he said it was not somebody at the school. Though the OP discussed on this thread his car free status, it was never clear that the original abuse allegation even addressed that issue. The situation described in the allegation may not have matched the OP's description of the situation. I suspect that they rarely do.

  23. #98
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rowan View Post
    I hope the law suit gets thrown out.

    What you seem to have missed here is that the caseworker was acting on a complaint lodged by someone in your community (the school). When a report like that is lodged, the agency is obligated to investigate. There is no requirement for the caseworker to take what you say at face value. And what sort of discrimination and harrassment are we talking about? Did the letter actually say "not guilty" because I thought only a court of law was able to delivery that sort of "verdict"? I would have thought the investigators would have stated "no case to answer".

    You have a positive outcome from the agency. Why pursue this any further with the law suits? As you stated in your second post, the law suit against the agency staffers is unlikely to go anywhere. The lawyer will be the only winner. And then there is the law suit against the school board. What is going to happen there? You alienate yourself even more in a community environment that your daughter has to attend every day? I'd just wave the letter from the investigators in the face of the school principal, and say it's a done deal, now let's get on with our lives.

    I also hope you have savings to ensure that you can pay his bills and those of the caseworker and the school board.
    Are you a lawyer licensed to practice in NY?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rowan View Post
    I hope the law suit gets thrown out.


    I also hope you have savings to ensure that you can pay his bills and those of the caseworker and the school board.
    The more I think about this post the nastier it seems. American military families have been treated badly enough for a Canadian living in Tasmania to wish them harm. The OP is taking care of a military dependent and is harassed by over reaching bureaucrats for nothing. I am a veteran and I know something about what these families have to deal with.

    I haven't seen the pleadings in the case and there is no way to judge how it will turnout. The Plaintiff's attorney may be relying on a New York statute or case law. He took the case thinking it had some merit. From what I've read here this is simply egregious behavior on the part of the authorities. For the plaintiff to drop the case, as you suggested, would mean he would have to pay his lawyer for the time so far. The matter before the agency might not have been dismissed except for the law suit in court.

    As far as the suit against the school board, the OP's ward will get a lot more respect if there is a judgemnt on his favor, than if the case is is dropped.

  25. #100
    Been Around Awhile I-Like-To-Bike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ironwood View Post
    The more I think about this post the nastier it seems. American military families have been treated badly enough for a Canadian living in Tasmania to wish them harm. The OP is taking care of a military dependent and is harassed by over reaching bureaucrats for nothing. I am a veteran and I know something about what these families have to deal with.
    Oh Puhleeze, spare the flag waving pitch. I'm also a U.S. veteran. It doesn't mean diddly as far as this thread is concerned. You, me, Rowan and anybody else, lawyer, veteran, U.S. citizen even good-for-nothing slackers are all just as entitled to state their opinions here.

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