Issues with American's Foster Care System
The American foster care system is a system credited with the tasks of accepting and caring for abandoned, abused, and neglected children. This system is entailed with the responsibilities of ensuring that the children who undergo such life situations neglect, abandonment, and abuse receive a voice to demand better treatment and a home to live. It is also mandated with ensuring that parents who would wish to adopt a child do so in the right procedures. Nonetheless, the system is also one that has been under recent criticism for its conduct while dealing with the children it is tasked to take care of. Some of the reasons for this criticism are because some individuals view the system that is overwhelmed by responsibility, and both the juvenile court system and the foster care system have an excess of responsibilities on their hands. These individuals propose that the American system is currently tailored to report apparent abuse resulting in multiple inappropriate results and reports and a consequent waste of time. On the other hand, others feel that policy makers ought to create a separate entity that caters for the abused, abandoned, and neglected children this system should be outside the administration of juvenile justice. Separating the foster care system from the children's court system will beneficially result to efficient tracking, handling, and treatment of children under the program.
Creating a System that is too quick to Report Abuses
Reporting child abuses has become a standard norm for American citizens and has resulted in a pile work of work for both the juvenile court system and the foster care system. Evidently, the benefits of reporting child mistreatment for the societies are immense as it would help save a childs life or help a family unite with a separated child. However, there are those that choose not to report cases of child mistreatment for various reasons including the notion that they fear or are willing to get involved. Moreover, they feel that reporting would only worsen the situation, they might risk angering the affected family, and that the report might negatively affect the relations between the reporter and the affected family. Nonetheless, the numbers of reported child mishandling cases have been on a steady rise in the past years significantly contributed to telephone penetration, quick responses, and implementation of stricter laws that punish juvenile offenders. The amount of calls to the child protection centers has become so much that studies realize that, consequently, they have become overwhelming troubles for both the juvenile court system and the foster care program.
Addressing every distress call of child mistreatment report to ensure that no crime has been committed leads to excessive time wastage and utilization of unnecessary resources. Notably, not all incidents of reports are genuine requiring interventions from child protective services. Some individuals make reports based on assumptions and made-up facts based on the perceptions of the situations at hand. They fail to take the time to do a personal study to evaluate whether there is an action of child mishandling currently in play. Upon assessing and gathering enough proof of any wrongdoing, then those individuals may push forward and make their reports. On behalf of the people who work at the child protective services including the juvenile court and foster care program addressing every reported incident has become a tiring task and a vast waste of resources. Most of the allegations are found to misconceptions of the situations and the reporters merely claim, To have heard but not seen the wrongful acts of mistreatment in play.
In addition, the American way of life is one currently tailored in a way that citizens find it easier to report child abuse incidents before regarding taking intervention measures. Before making any reports, the child protective services advice people to make necessary investigations to ensure that indeed there are the cases of mistreatment. They then may try to directly intervene and get custody of the child and drive them to the nearest police station and report the matter. After which, they should let the police service people to handle the situation. Investigating and addressing is an intelligent way of helping to ease the amount of work on behalf of the people in the response unit. In addition, it may be timely to ensure that no harm occurs to the child before the arrival of the police to address the issue. In my opinion, I consider that the government should introduce community-based educational programs that aim at educating civilians on the proper steps towards reporting child abuse incidences. These measures include the manner to getting involved including direct and indirect involvement without risking any harmful effects. Moreover, community residents should be in a position of differentiating distress calls from those that are not, and the designated hotline numbers to dial to report ongoing incidences.
Finally, the current state of the child abuse system is that the current policies call for harsh treatment for offenders, creating a form of hysteria among communities. The American way of life is one that treats individuals involved in child abuse incidences with much greater hysteria than those of other crimes including drug smuggling, gang related activities, and theft. Due to the current laws that harshly treat such individuals through strict sentencing and consequent monitoring, a form of panic now hovers around all communities concerning child protection. Notably, it is as if the current laws aim at swift punishment rather than immediate intervention, whereby, it encourages its citizens to be ready to report than offer help or advice. Some reported cases are usually found to be minor and could be handled without the interventions of child protection services, but since people wish to see the response of local law enforcement than offer their assistance, they make the reports.
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Creating a Separate Juvenile and Foster Care System
The current state of the child protective services is one that lacks clear distinction of rules and governing regulations between the juvenile care system and the foster care system. Most of the tasks are interlinked lacking distinctions between each other. Personally, I presume that this interlinking is among the primary reasons people fail to know which center to contact to address the situation at hand. I believe that indeed there is a need to separate the two entities from each other to create a distinct system that has unique responsibilities from each other. Doing so would ease efficiently significantly the workload between them, as any cases of child endangerment would be reported directly to the relevant body. In addition, the separate system would improve the accountability when addressing how a resolution was conducted.
Furthermore, separating the two systems would consequently ease the mandate of the federal government when allocating funds for both programs. When the two system operates in distinct environs each handling their respective incidences that fall within the dockets of their delegated responsibilities, only then would the federal government find it easy to determine which of the two has more workload and deserves a larger allocation of funds. In addition, based on documentation from past and ongoing cases from both entities, it is easier to judge the amount their workloads, thereby, efficiently allocating the critical resources for handling them. These resources include staff, transportation, equipment, research material, and lawyers.
Furthermore, separating the two programs would further ease the congestion and backload of past and ongoing court cases. Since every reported case of child abuse requires consequent follow-up from the relevant authorities, include the police and child protection services, any evidence of endangerment and neglect would ultimately demand a court hearing. This would be vital to ease some ongoing cases and relieve some pressure from the legal system, a systematic way of separating the juvenile court and foster care program would be a sure way of addressing their cases without resulting to increased backlogged cases. The court would know the manner through which to address individual cases based on departments, that is, the court system would have an agency that directly handle cases from the juvenile services and those from the foster care.
Moreover, separating the two would be a sure way of helping to create programs that address underlying problems. Studies suggest that some of the best means of reducing and highlighting issues regarding child delinquency are by providing programs that educate children against criminal behaviors during early strategies of their lives. The juvenile court system would then be tasked with the responsibilities of handling delinquency cases whether they involve a child in the foster care system or not. This approach would be more time saving compared to letting the foster care system handle delinquent children under their umbrella and the juvenile system handling those with guardians. On the other hand, the foster care system would be tasked primarily with addressing assaults, abuses, abandoning, and child endangering. This measure, in my opinion, would be a considerable step to helping the two programs cater to the children and their families without any contradicting responsibilities.
Notably, separating the juvenile court system and the foster care program would increase accountability and enhance the integrity between both of them. By ensuring that the parameters of operations for both programs are clearly outlined and distinct from each other, it would be easier for the government and relevant regulatory bodies to demand any form of accountability for the rendered services. Moreover, the separation would assist during resource allocation, court hearings, and police dispatching. In the cases of distress calls to the police, having gathered information from the reporter, the police are in a situation to make direct requests for intervention based on the outlined responsibilities.
Finally, separating the foster care system and the juvenile court system would benefit researchers to make an accurate theoretical assumption based on data collected from each entity. For example, while reporting cases of child abuse, researchers would only require visiting child abuse offices and view their files. Noting that not all children under the foster care program are juvenile offenders it would then be easier for the researchers to collect data from the minor programs having eliminated those from the foster care program. Additionally, it would be possible to make the critical distinction between rates of juvenile delinquencies, cases of child endangering, and abandoning, based on data from the categorized departments.
Conclusively, the foster care and children's court programs have tremendously assisted in America's efforts of taking care of the needy, abandoned, and delinquent children. They are means for providing both short-term and long-term and solutions to underlying problems such and abuse, endangerment, and unlawful acts. Noteworthy, through their programs that involve working hand-in-hand with community and non-profit organizations, both programs have contributed towards fighting crimes committed against children and those also perpetrated by them. However, both programs have come under recent criticism over the quality of their works. Many citizens regard that both programs have been overwhelmed by their workloads attributed to the vast number of reported cases and the interconnectedness between them. To best address this predicament, a notable solution would be to separate the two to create two distinct programs.