Not All Children Should Go Home

Often at child welfare gatherings someone says "Children shouldn't be removed from their parents because they always want to go home anyway".  Usually heads nod in agreement.

Actually, a small but significant percentage of children fight to be emancipated from their parents.  Others may understandably yearn to go home, but frequently this would put them in unacceptably risky settings.

Underlying the view that children should nearly always stay with their parents is a common perception that many are removed from their homes unnecessarily.

However we know of no current research showing widespread inappropriate removals of children. We do know that dozens of Minnesota children have died because they were returned to dangerous situations.

Placement decisions should be based on child safety, not conventional wisdom or what children wish were possible.

Rich Gehrman