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child safety concerns Georgia

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  • child safety concerns Georgia

    My SO and I are concerned with the way his sister is taking care of her child (my SO's niece). Sister is currently a single mother because her husband, the father of her child, is in prison. I do not know how much longer he will be there, but it's safe to assume at least another year. I know things are tough on Sister right now. She's had to raise the child on her own, pay for her house and all of her bills on her own, and try and maintain a relationship betw her husband and their child through the prison system. But there is no excuse for the way she has allowed her house to become a toxic waste dump. She refuses to wash dishes... so dishes piled up in the sink and they've been sitting there in stagnant water for almost 2 years. The entire kitchen smells like rot. There is black mold growing inside her refrigerator (not on the food.. inside on the actual fridge surface!) and on trash that she's left out on the counters. She has a serious gnat (or fruit fly, can't really tell the difference) problem. There are so many in the living room that it's impossible to watch tv or eat without getting them in your nose or mouth. They had a small dog not too long ago that urinated and defecated on the floor in the living room and on the couch (I understand that's what dogs -and cats!- do sometimes, but these areas never got fully cleaned, just wiped with a towel). Sister also does not discipline her child when the child misbehaves. I understand that each parent has a different parenting style, and good vs bad behavior is more of an individual opinion - but she allows the child to yell and scream at her and others when the child is told what to do. Watching them, it's almost as if Sister gets so frustrated with telling the child what to do that she just turns off and lets the child do whatever the child wants.

    We lived with Sister for 4 months, about 2 years ago. When we lived there, we did the dishes and cleaned. Until recently, we were making regular visits to her home to visit her and the child. We haven't been there recently because it simply smells so awful and it's disgusting. Sister doesn't allow anyone but close family to visit the home because of how gross it is over there.

    We fear for her health and safety, but more importantly the child's health and safety. Sister has a choice to take care of the home or do other things instead, but the child has no choice. SO is scared to do anything about it. He's hesitant to mention it to her, because she is hot-tempered and she's his older sister. And of course he won't call child services because it's his sister. I'm hesitant to do it because she will know it was me, and their family will hate me forever. But I feel like I shouldn't just sit back and allow this to go on. I don't want to impose, but I don't want the child to be harmed.

    Any advice, or am I just too worried and need to back off?

  • #2
    Call 1-800 4 A CHILD they will put you in contact with a local worker who will take an abuse report. You can remain anonymous to both caller and your sister inlaw. You will need to give detail of what you have observed not what you speculate
    http://www.parentnook.com/forum/

    Comment


    • #3
      Okay, you are an adult, correct? Surely you can handle the displeasure of his family more than the child can handle the disgusting living environment and the neglect.

      For God's sake, call CPS! Oh, tell your SO to grow a set. Big deal...it's his sister. Well, his sister is living worse than a pig (no animal actually soils its HOME...why do you think you see animal droppings out in the open???) who is neglecting this child. Yeah, that's someone's opinion I would worry about.

      Call CPS RIGHT NOW!
      Last edited by mommyof4; 10-19-2007, 07:19 AM.
      HOOK 'EM HORNS!!!
      How do you catch a very rare rabbit?
      (unique up on him)
      How do catch an ordinary rabbit?
      (same way)

      Comment


      • #4
        I agree with Mommy. It is time to not worry about what other adults will think. There is a child living in filth and be neglected. Have you seen the news about the KILLER STAPH that is going around right now? Call CPS and make them aware of the situation. CPS may offer parenting classes and other services that can help her deal with the situation she is currently in. If you stand back and do nothing, you are as a guilty as her if something were to happen to this child.

        Best of Luck
        Amateurs built the Ark, Professionals built the Titanic

        Comment


        • #5
          Thanks to all three of you for responding. I've never dealt with something like this, and I've never actually been involved in a CPS matter before, so I was unaware that it could really be this serious (I thought I was over-reacting and over-stepping my boundaries).

          I will speak to SO when he gets home from work, and we will discuss who should make the call. If CPS DOES go to Sister's house and conducts an investigation, and then she asks me about it, should I lie to her? I am an adult and I realize that no one can make these decisions for me, but I'm looking for a little support. I WILL have to deal with SO's family for the rest of our relationship, and I'm afraid of the harassment and resentment. I don't see eye-to-eye with SO's family on much, and I'm sure they'll see this as a vindictive move. It's not, but I won't be able to convince them otherwise.

          I do care more about the child then my feelings getting hurt, which is why I posted this. But it still scares me.

          Comment


          • #6
            CPS should keep the name of the person who made a report confidential. If it will make you feel better, be sure and discuss that with the case worker when you call.

            You don't have to tell anybody that you called. Will they believe it wasn't you? I don't know. However, if this child is in school, surely someone else has noticed that she is not living in a clean environment and surely someone else has noticed her behavior.

            I really didn't mean to be mean to you. I was just trying to be extra blunt to get the message across.

            If her family is so willing to overlook the disgusting conditions and neglect to "keep the peace", then really they are not worth the time you would waste worrying about their reactions. Yes, I know dealing with them day to day is a lot harder than saying that they are not worth your time. But really, in the end, all that matters is that this child, who is completely helpless and powerless, needs at least one person to stand up and let her know that it is NOT okay to force her to live like this. She needs to know that at least somebody cares enough to try to help. The child is the only important person in this situation, right now.
            Last edited by mommyof4; 10-19-2007, 08:42 AM.
            HOOK 'EM HORNS!!!
            How do you catch a very rare rabbit?
            (unique up on him)
            How do catch an ordinary rabbit?
            (same way)

            Comment


            • #7
              As I said you can remain anonymous. If your asked then answer how you wish. CPS realizes how touchy these things can be and that is why they will not release you name as reporting party or you can not even tell CPS who you are. However it will validate your claim if you do. I provided number please use it
              http://www.parentnook.com/forum/

              Comment


              • #8
                I thought I was over-reacting and over-stepping my boundaries
                You are not over reacting. When it comes to the basic safety of a child, there are no boundaries to overstep.

                If you had said that the mother doesn't mop the floor every other day, or there is clutter in the living room....then I would have said you were over reacting. What you described is way beyond a general mess.
                HOOK 'EM HORNS!!!
                How do you catch a very rare rabbit?
                (unique up on him)
                How do catch an ordinary rabbit?
                (same way)

                Comment

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