State goverment controlling child welfare and family court: protect our children from the unjustified removal of a parent.
  • Petitioned United States Congress

This petition was delivered to:

United States Congress
North Carolina State Senate
North Carolina State House
North Carolina-015
State Rep. Phillip Shepard
North Carolina-006
State Sen. Harry Brown

State goverment controlling child welfare and family court: protect our children from the unjustified removal of a parent.

    1. Shawn Schmidt
    2. Petition by

      Shawn Schmidt

      Holly Ridge, NC

Too many children are losing out on love from a birthmother due to the neglect of our court systems and DSS. The system even admits its broken. It is time for change!! I'm begging for your immediate attention to this matter and help me. I'm just a mother, but I'm a determined mother.

To:
United States Congress
North Carolina State Senate
North Carolina State House
State Rep. Phillip Shepard, North Carolina-015
State Sen. Harry Brown, North Carolina-006
Too many children are losing out due to the neglect of our court systems and DSS. I along with mothers all over the united states are unified in the motion to take affirmative action agianst all states government to assure repeal and real change in family courts and our department of social services. No child should ever feel left behind!

Sincerely,
[Your name]

Recent signatures

    News

    1. Thank you!

      Shawn Schmidt
      Petition Organizer

      Today my local paper took intrest in this matter. I'm not sure what will happen, but as I've promised... I speak for us all, not just myself! We thank you for the support and ask if interested in further discussion you join us at "Not without MY children" and "Mothers Unite" on Facebook. Thank you again.

    2. Reached 10 signatures

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • Ashley Todd WILMINGTON, NC
      • over 1 year ago

      My Story: In 2009 when I was pregnant with DD2 I had a fraternal twin loss which resulted in the loss of most of my breast milk causing my oldest DD1, to become failure to thrive. I didn’t know I had lost breast milk because I did not pump. During a doctor’s appointment a lab worker put a tourniquet on my daughter’s arm leaving it on long enough for her entire arm to turn blue and her to scream and flail. I asked her to loosen it and she refused, she I removed it and she raised her voice at me due to the altercation CPS became involved I was falsely accused of having mental health issues and neglecting DD1. She was then put in the hospital and I did not leave her side. The maternal side of Exs’ family became involved and upon their arrival Ex showed no interest in staying at the hospital with me and our daughter. They put me down for wanting to re lactate my breast milk supply and breastfeeding in general. They accused me of being mentally ill anytime I did not agree with them and even had temper tantrums. I was not allowed to have time to myself, or be my myself. I was dealing with a loss and did not learn I was still pregnant until after their arrival. Ex and I agreed to keep the pregnancy a secret from them while they lived with us. I spoke with a social worker/counselor about how they had treated me while they lived with us. They went back home after nearly a month of living with us. After they left the case was eventually closed due to the fact that our caseworker and her supervisor felt I did not have mental health issues and there was no need for an open case. No one in Exs’ family warned me that he had serious mental health issues. We had DD2 in 2009, I successfully breastfeed her for a full year and then she self weaned. We continued on happy and enjoying life as a family. Ex quit a good paying job and started searching for work only finding odds and ends jobs here and there. In February 2011 we were evicted from our home we took what little money we had and put our things in storage and stayed at a state park. We moved to a camping cabin and Ex abandoned us at a there and took tax money we had planned to use to get into an apartment and went missing for three days leaving me with very little cash to support the now three of us. He showed up as I filed a missing person’s report, and agreed to bring groceries over for us, but not to live with us. I had no car and he would not leave car seats so I could transport our daughters. Thinking he was having a mid-life crisis and this would be over soon, I decided the kids and I would move into an efficiency apartment. We stayed there for a month. Ex visited us whenever it suited him & continued a physical relationship with me. With Ex and I newly separated many of my friends started coming around and visited myself and my children often, and helped me to get car seats for the girls, rides to the store, and offering support to us. During one of these such visits a friend of mine was so disgusted that I did not immediately file for divorce that she called NC DSS on me and made up false accusations about not only myself but also about Ex. So we had an open case and the case worker had no problem with my daughters living with me. I did look into divorce, legal aid in NC does not cover family law and I was unable to afford a $2,500 retainer fee for a lawyer. I also did not want to give up on my marriage yet or put the girls through that after all we had already been through, wanting to try to work things out for my daughters sake so they could have both mother and father, also because I loved him (love is blind). My daughters and I were offered a home with my best friend and her fiancé (moved in with them in March 2011) until we could get back on our feet so we moved again and once the girls adjusted they were happy and thriving wonderfully. I had the open DSS case transferred to the new town we lived in and they also had no problem with me having my daughters wanted me to get a mental health evaluation and so I applied for Medicaid for myself. I called back from time to time to ask about whether or not the Medicaid for myself was approved only to get the run around about it. There were no places I could go to have a mental health evaluation done for free. The girls had a checkup in which Ex was not interested in attending. He met me after their appointment and spent time with only me while my friend watched the girls. He suffered many delusions off and on while we were apart and claimed to be “out of the country” so as to avoid any conversations (during one occasion we passed him and honked the horn, he stopped and talked with us for a while) . Eventually, Ex got more and more comfortable around myself and the girls and started talking about wanting to come live with us and made plans to do so. In Early May 2011 Ex and I conceived our son during what was to be our last weekend living with my friend and her fiancé. We moved back to the same town we lived in as a family. I took a home pregnancy test and got a positive in June 2011. We became homeless after staying with a friend we decided was not a good person to be living with. The DSS case was moved back to the place the accusations originated and with a new caseworker on the case a different attitude was being given to me. Ex was very much against homeless shelters and always refused for us to be put in one. He preferred camping so he decided to put us on an island off the inter coastal waterway via a kayak just past the bridge for Figure 8 Island. He had a friend living not far from there and would leave us often to meet with his friend and he also met with our caseworker and made up various lies about my supposed neglect and abuse of the children, and mental health issues. I met with our new caseworker only one time and was told I had to get a mental health evaluation yet again, I told the caseworker I had applied for it in the last town we lived and heard nothing from them on whether or not I had Medicaid for myself and asked to use his phone to see if they would answer me yet again only to hear nothing. Upon returning to the island I had no contact to the world and no way to get off the island by myself with my daughters as Ex always took the kayak. We stayed on the island for a week and when the week was up Ex told me we had to go to DSS and get a new food stamp card because he lost ours in the ocean, we paddled off the island to a marina and were driven to DSS by our caseworker. When we arrived at DSS I was told I had to let my daughters and my husband go now or I would be forcibly removed from the room in front of my daughters. I was told the were going to be sent to live with family and I protested to it knowing his maternal side of the family was very hateful to me during their stay with us while DD1 was failure to thrive. I did not know he was going to stay with the paternal side. I told the caseworker and his supervisor (same supervisor from the first case) I did not understand why we were being split up when there was no proof of any abuse, neglect, or mental issue, I brought up the question of why she had bothered closing the first case if she felt I were really mental at all it would have stayed open. I was treated in an extremely rude and hateful manner and accused of abusing my daughters and being delusional without being allowed one word to defend myself . I was again told to say goodbye. I kissed and hugged them each goodbye while sobbing. The girls were give stuffed animals and we were each taken separate ways. I was taken into a separate room where I was informed that I had supposedly had Medicaid since April 2011 in the other county where I had lived and that I was going to take a mental health evaluation ASAP. My caseworker’s supervisor phoned a place called The Harbor. I listened on as the supervisor of my caseworker again accused me of abusing my daughters and being delusional without being allowed one word to defend myself and was told I would be driven there to get a mental health evaluation. Upon arriving at The Harbor I informed them I was pregnant and made them give me a pregnancy test. I told the intake lady everything and was told I did not qualify for any of their services as I was not a danger to myself or others and I did not seem like I needed to be there at all to her. I was taken to another room where I was allowed to call family and friends to find a place to stay. I stayed with a friend’s mother then moved in with another friend and her family and continued to try to prove to DSS that I was not mentally ill and I addressed my concerns to the caseworkers about my daughters and their safety with Ex as I had started therapy with a licensed physiologist and was diagnosed with adjustment disorder with anxiety (due to not having contact with my daughters and having a very small support system at that time. ) and empowerment classes at Domestic Violence. I started night school for my GED and was called by Ex on my first night there and he told me he wanted me to come to Texas and was saving up money so he could moneygram me and I could take a bus out to him and the girls. When I returned to my friend’s home that night she was happy to learn I had heard from my daughters and even gotten to talk to them on the phone. My friend admitted that she had called in the false accusations and shortly after her confession ( about 2 weeks), she claimed she and her husband no longer wanted me in their home because my husband could find their home address by looking up their home phone number in whitepages and in the same day had her husband drop me off where I was originally staying with my friend’s mother. When Ex paid for me to come to Texas last year and I arrived the day before DD1's birthday. When I got here I met more of his family and they grew to love me and see through the lies they had been told about me by Ex They helped Ex get a job doing construction on Fort Hood & also helped us get our own place. Ex lost the job and went through various other jobs during his time here in Texas. He started leaving all day and coming home at dark telling me that he was looking for work when he was really playing video games with his brother or getting job applications and stacking them on the highest shelf of our closet where I did not see them (being as short as I am) until a friend helped me move out (more about that later). Ex did not want everyone communicating with and liking me so he lied and made me think no one here cared about me or our kids and in turn told his family I didn't like or care about them, which is not true. Then in December 2011 out of desperation of getting a three day eviction notice he told me he was going to take the kids to get coats and that he would meet up with me later. That I would go window shopping and we would meet up at 12 pm at Barnes and Noble in Market Heights shopping center. He never met me. I waited all day and scared that something dreadful had happened to him I called his family to come pick me up and found my house trashed, no husband and no daughters. I was 8 months pregnant and facing our eviction notice. I found out he got his wealthy maternal aunt to pay for him and the girls to go to Massachusetts to visit his family and they were going to stay the holiday with them and would return after the holidays were over. When I asked where I should go or what I should do about myself and our unborn baby at the time; he coldly replied “Go to the hospital or the homeless shelter.” then he hung up on me after refusing to let me speak with the girls and refusing to give any contact information at all. He lied to me and did not intend to return. I moved in with a friend and her family and was able to move all our belongings and store them at my new roommates home. I was served court papers on a Friday and given the weekend and 2 days to prepare to self represent myself in court . I learned he tried to give temporary custody to his maternal aunt presenting affidavits from his maternal side of the family and pictures of our home which showed it in a trashed condition. I contested and self represented myself over the phone in court. The girls were put in state custody . The maternal aunt became their foster mother, despite my fears that the girls would be brain washed against me. I was told by our caseworker I was allowed to Skype the girls and worked with their foster mother to do so. Even though I could sense the tension she had when dealing with all times I appreciated what time I got with my daughters and hoped it would show her how much they needed me. I was given a court appointed attorney, and I had to call the courts my self to find out his contact information since then we have worked hard to finally bring a process called the Interstate Compact Placement of Children (or ICPC) to the case. February 2nd 2012 I gave birth to DS1 with Exs’ paternal aunt and 2 of my roommates present. Since then I have been providing for DS1. We set up a room in our home for the girls to share and have been working to bring them home. Ex showed a bit of interest in DS1 asking on Facebook to see a picture of the baby shortly after I had him. I allowed him to see pictures of DS1 and he called me a few times to talk to me. One day something was wrong, he talked with me off and on through face book all day saying his life was “at an end” and he was “going to give his life up for our daughters” I told him if he was on any medicines for mental issues it sounded like he was having adverse effects and to get to the hospital ASAP, he promised he would, but, later that evening, he called my roommates’ phone crying and asking to talk to me. He told me he was sorry for everything he every did to hurt me or the kids and any pain he ever caused me and in between his sobs he told me he had shot himself. So I begged him to tell me where we was and then hung up and called the police. After giving them the information I called Ex back got more information and begged for any information he could give me. We had to go pick up my friend’s son from work and I missed a call from Ex and got a voicemail, we checked it and heard a gunshot. I sobbed and DS1 cried because I did. I called Ex and heard him scream and cry and I knew he shot himself, he told me he shot himself in the leg in his femoral artery and would be dead before the anyone found him, and then gave me a few hints which I passed on to the police , who were tracking his cell phone. He started going cold, shivering and seemed comforted by my voice so I talked to him and stayed on the phone until the rescue team found him. For days he lay in bed having to have his pain managed so he could have surgery to remove the bullet, the reconstructed his leg. He got some mental health for his issues and told me he was talking with someone regularly. Two court dates come and go and we have a foster care review in which I learned that Ex now has a home, a car, has paid for early childhood development classes, as well as visited our daughters, and receives SSI, but has yet to offer or respond to my request that he offer support for DS1. I also informed him that I have a case open with the Attorney General’s Office for child support. We did a homestudy while I was living with a friend and did not pass due to the second above ground pool being used to stock catfish not being covered. DCF is refusing to pay for a FULL "comprehensive" mental health evaluation and are refusing to accept the assessments I did (2 now one from MHMR, and one from Michael Campbell) They plan to adopt my children out to my husband's side of the family without giving me a truly fair chance. That’s what has happened.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • holly tesseneer MIDWAY PARK, NC
      • over 1 year ago

      because children who are taking away from one of there parents due to spitefulness of the other is not fair for the children

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Clara Titus MEADVILLE, PA
      • over 1 year ago

      Children Services does not always remove children that should be removed.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Loni Smith YOUNGSTOWN, OH
      • over 1 year ago

      I am one of those mothers whose children were wrongfully taken from her due to neglect from the family court system/CPS.... I have been battling for 4 yrs without any type of help/assistance from the government/courts/CPS.... My children are victims- && I hope my signature helps to prevent any other children from becoming victims to this type of situation. Every child needs their mother!

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Shawn Schmidt HOLLY RIDGE, NC
      • over 1 year ago

      Because too many children are lost in the system, and with the economy the way it is its s stuggle in a two income home keeping up with the bills, let alone one income fighting the state in court just to see your child. We need reform!

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:

    Develop your own tools to win.

    Use the Change.org API to develop your own organizing tools. Find out how to get started.