EP 582 Child Protective Services or Is It Child Policing Services?

The child welfare system is, we are told, in place to protect children from abuse.  In fact, the inordinate number of interventions in Black families suggests that the touted benevolence has turned into significant overreach tearing these families apart and thrusting children into a foster care system known to cause devastating harms.  Often the crime these families have committed is not negligence or abuse but the sad fact of being poor in a nation whose safety net is far from adequate to address many of the needs that families and children have.  Our guest, Dorothy Roberts, the George A. Weiss University Professor of Law and Sociology at the University of Pennsylvania has written a bold new book, “Torn Apart: How the Child Welfare System Destroys Black Families–And How Abolition Can Build a Safer World.”  Professor Roberts is a respected and controversial figure as she calls for radical change. Some might call it taking apart the current system root and branch.  Rather than providing protective services for children she has coined the term the ‘family policing system’ to better describe what is going on when there are now interventions of one sort or another in over fifty percent of Black families.  So if we abolish the child welfare system, what will we replace it with?  Find out on this podcast