Thursday, July 30, 2015

More Pathetic PR From The Only Scrutiny Free Department in Maine's DHHS

Here she goes being all morally superior again.
"There is nothing more important than any of us can ever do than to love a child and to help support them today to help ensure a brighter future for them tomorrow," said Mayhew.  
Maine needs more foster families  (FYI: I tried to post the video here but it didn't work.  Please click the link and watch so you know what I'm talking about.)
I swear to God if there was a fake sob story telling contest, Maine's DHHS Commissioner Mary Mayhew would be a shoo-in.  Especially after this little video from WCSH 6 where she continues this whiny foster parent recruitment drive that has been going on for the last few months.

And to bring in that poor sweet, clean-cut and brainwashed foster care poster-child, so full of gratitude, so happy to be in foster care, such a wonderful outcome...  
"I get to express what it's like living in a foster home and show that there is a savior. It's a great way to allow kids to actually have a life when you feel like there's nothing left," said Packard.
This is absolutely pathetic!

This is false advertising and phony public relations or deceptive marketing or whatever you want to call it.  This does a dis-service to the people of Maine by selling people who can't possibly handle a damaged kid, on a happily ever after fairy-tale.  They completely disregard the very real challenges that foster parents face with very damaged kids who come into their homes with tons of emotional baggage, physical ailments and behavior problems.  They also disregard the fact that many of these kids have loving but imperfect families who are fighting for them to this day, while the state continues to cut off the less costly services that used to help families stay together.  They disregard the fact that many of these kids are better off left alone than they are in foster care.

Interestingly enough, on July 16th of this year, (just 2 short weeks ago) WMTW 8 was doing the same thing by reporting that....
The Department of Health and Human Services said hundreds of people are taking steps to become foster parents after putting out a plea from the department's commissioner.  
 More Maine families opening homes to foster children  (2nd paragraph.  Check it out.  Unlike DHHS I never make any of this stuff up.)
The "hundreds of people who are taking steps to become foster parents" apparently aren't enough though because we need more.

The article features two wonderful gay men who opened their hearts and were raising a special needs teenager in their wonderful therapeutic foster home of happiness.  

And just a month ago, several wonderful grandparents who are raising many of these kids who the state takes away from their parents were in the news seeking more support from the state.

So we have all of these wonderful people helping out, which is great, but we have nobody asking why we suddenly have such a drastic increase in the number of foster kids in Maine.  We have nobody trying to find ways to solve that problem.  We have nobody bringing up the fact that the LePage Administration has been working tirelessly to cut off funding for services to families who need them under the guise of welfare reform.  I don't think most people even see it as a problem.  We even have the Channel 8 article claiming...
A 2012 study by the Foundation for Government Accountability found that Maine ranks in the bottom 10 states when it comes to re-unifying families,
which is obviously a major factor and a major problem that should be addressed.  Why?  Because it's what's best for these kids.  Most of them want to be with their families.  Nobody bothers to bring up the possibility that the state is taking too many kids and keeping them for longer than they should or not giving them back at all.  Often times families are desperately fighting for the return of these kids while the state pays it's lawyers to prevent reunification every step of the way and the media turns them into monsters.  It's absolutely shameful, and the pain and suffering that this agency causes for theses families and kids doesn't even begin to come into the discussion.
There is no scrutiny here.  We are simply left to assume that DHHS is on the right track while taking more and more kids from their homes at a higher and higher cost to the taxpayer without even questioning it, without questioning the struggles families are going through, without providing the services needed to keep the kids safe in the home.  
Of course, if this was a welfare program that could help to keep a kid safe in the home, like AFDC, Snap, General Assistance, a daycare subsidy or Medicaid, the LePage administration would be finding ways to cut it, streamline it, prevent drug abusers from accessing it and lower costs to the taxpayer.  But not the Department of Children and Families.  On the contrary, they were the only ones to get raises back in August of 2012 despite an across the board raise freeze for state workers in Maine that had been in place since 2009.   Governor LePage and Commissioner Mayhew felt it was important to give them a moral boost.   Also, back in April of 2012, when LePage called managers at DHHS corrupt, he obviously wasn't referring to child welfare workers.  Just everybody else at DHHS. 

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