Have you ever wondered what questions child protective services (CPS) asks children when they conduct an investigation?
Across the country, most CPS investigations begin the same way: a social worker asks (or demands) to talk to the parents, privately interview the children, and inspect the home.
In almost every case we handle, when the social worker requests permission to interview the children, we ask what questions they want to ask. CPS almost always gives us the same basic list of questions, which they call a “full” or “global” interview. In one case, the social worker sent us the list in writing.
“Here is [sic] the questions that are included in a general interview of children …
Name, birthday, if they enjoy school
Home environment – sleeping arrangement, lights, water, a/c, food to eat
Discipline – what happens when they get in trouble?
Domestic Violence – if any adults fight or hit each other in the home?
Medical – if they take any medicine or get to go to the doctor?
Substance Abuse – If they know what drugs are? If yes, then if they know anyone that use this? If they know what alcohol is? If yes, then if they know anyone that uses this?
Sexual Abuse – If they know the parts of their body that it is not OK for people to look at or touch? If they understand this then ask if anyone has touched them here or made them feel uncomfortable in this way?
If they feel safe in their home? If they have any other problems they need help with?”
Please take a moment to imagine your own children being asked these questions.
While some questions cover basic information such as their name and whether their home has water, others involve highly invasive or mature subjects. Of course, there are situations where these questions may be completely appropriate, but those are the exception. Nevertheless, it does not matter what the allegations are or how irrelevant these questions are, a social worker will generally want to ask these questions in almost every interview with children.
In fact, in the case where the social worker provided the questions pictured, only one question (redacted) related to the allegations. All of the other proposed questions were completely unrelated to the allegations–they were a total fishing expedition. We ended up going to court to oppose CPS’ demands to ask these questions. By the grace of God, we won. The judge ruled that none of the children had to be interviewed at all, much less about such intrusive, private, and innocence-robbing matters that had nothing to do with the case in the first place.
This is one reason why we stress the importance of having an attorney. It is not just to protect your rights and to keep your children from being wrongfully taken away from you. It is also to protect your children from being unnecessarily subjected to interviews with questions like these.
If you are a member of Heritage Defense and your family is ever falsely accused of child abuse or neglect through social services, we are ready to defend you and your rights.
If you are not yet a member, please join today to have 24/7 access to experienced, Christian attorneys ready to defend your family.