That must have been heartbreaking
My approach with info I had on people that I knew about was to talk to my young nieces and nephews about what to do if someone tried to touch them. Not many of my friends had kids, but to do the same there. So instead of saying "stay away from Mr D as he is a ped.ophile" I would say something like "If anyone tries to touch you, or hurt you, you can always come and talk to me if you can't talk to your Mum" and just try to educate the kids that their bodies were their own, that no one would yell at them if they told, even if someone said we would. To let them know without scaring the pants off them that there are bad people out there and they don't have to do anything they don't want to and to run and scream if they felt they were in danger.
Apart from that, we worked closely with the Police and DOJ, and everyone was pretty on the ball with watching the known offenders. I'm sure that they probably did get away with things, but you can only do what you can do.
Last edited by Californication; 14-12-2011 at 17:25.
In small country towns, it's not just the DOCs workers who are involved in cases. I don't work for DOCs, but I have been involved with working together with them for years, including helping them seize children and keeping parents busy while children are taken away.
The stories I hear will always stay with me. I'll never forget any of them, but as a psychologist myself, and married to another, I am lucky that we can both unload to each other (we are both bound by rules of confidentiality, so it's okay for us to talk to each other, although we do tr not to give awa too many specifics).
I work very hard to educate all kids I work with, their parents, my friends, anyone, about the dangers of abuse in all it's forms. I don't regret any of the decisions I have made to remove children, call the police or appear in court.
No idea how they do that job such amazing people, it takes a really strong and decent human being to work in that area I think.
A friend of my mums actually worked for child services and she had a little girl the same age as me. They were really close from when we were born to 4 years old, where the woman hung herself in the garage and left behind her little girl. Mum found her she had written a letter before she did it saying that she had too much misery in her head and she couldn't handle it anymore.
This is in the 80s I hope there is FAR more support and help for workers these days because I imagine they would often need some support and an ear to listen to them after all that they have to take in.
My mum works for child protection. I know at one stage she got death threats from families where she had children removed.
I begin a uni course next year which leads primarily into DHS/DOCS It's a brand new course which has been developed in Victoria purely because of the lack of staff and social work/psychology students not willing to work for DHS/DOCS.
I'm petrified but completely passionate. I've had some wondeful talks to the course coordinator about my fears and reservations and I feel confident that I CAN go in another direction if I can't handle it.
I really want to get into the prevention and education side of things.
You guys have inspired me.
Last edited by faroutbrusselsprout; 14-12-2011 at 18:29.
The biggest problem with DOCs is that they are SEVERELY over worked, and seriously under resoured. In a country town I used to work in, there was only 1 fully trained social worker, and two who were studying. This centre serviced an area of 12 000 people! Children slip through the gaps because of this. DoCS workers themselves are crying out for help, but the government isn't doing anything to provide additional staff, and sometimes additional staff are simply not available. This is where teachers, nurses, ambulance and police officers must become involved and take on the role of protectionist, welfare worker and foster carer.
My old neighbour worked for DOCs as a social worker, from what she has told me, I commend anyone in that line of work. She told me she was hospitalised for 6weeks from not eating, mental breakdowns, being overworked and run down which caused other major health problems all from her line of work. Once she pulled through those 6weeks she was almost ready to quit but decided to try again, since she has found better ways to cope with the negative things she sees and is still working in her job.
I don't think I could ever do it.
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