I started this post several days ago when this story first broke and found the whole story so disturbing I got too upset to finish it. I am disgusted by the cruelty and willful ignorance of those who run the agencies of this state and the legislators who don't give them funds to operate at an acceptable level. This triggered my PTSD due to several incompetent excusify-ing agencies being involved in my multiple traumas. I am sick to death of all of them and the jackasses who have appointed each and every one.
I don't need to reiterate the abuse because unless someone has been living in a cave they know the story. Anya James had six adopted children plus foster children. OMFG! Is there any agency in this state that is not incompetent? The higher ups in this state knew there was a problem with OCS many have reported it including me. They just ignored us. Six kids adopted…I can’t even comprehend how screwed up an agency has to be. They should be doing home visits before each adoption and evaluate the condition of the children periodically. For foster care they need to make frequent unannounced home visits and interview the children when the foster parents are not present. Perhaps James started adopting, so she could refuse them entry for Foster Care home visits. This woman sounds like she would be a good candidate to be a corrections officer or work in a mental health unit in the prison system, same kind of torture.
I have never raised a child, I am a DES daughter (lies from drug companies, harmful drugs) and the only time I ever got pregnant was after being gang raped by eight men. Fortunately I never had that instinct that many women have that they will not be fulfilled if they don’t reproduce. I have taken care of some children as a nurse, mostly of the medically fragile, on ventilator type. My expertise is not in pediatrics and I would generally refuse to take care of children in hospitals as it is important to know in great detail how to care for a patient. In home health care is very established and you only have the one case, so it worked for anyone with any background. I did this part time for extra money or when I was too ill to sweat blood in the ICU.
Many foster parents want foster kids in their homes for the profit and they will lie like a corporation to cover up what really goes on. They also frequently make those in charge of overseeing the foster children such as social workers who are guardians, good friends for protection. Those involved should know better than to become personally involved with the foster parents so they can look at them objectively. It’s called having ethics, objectivity and professionalism.
In home health there are lots of foster child cases. I was shocked at the treatment of sick children by foster parents and in one case the birth parents. It was clear many of the parents just had the kids in their homes for profit. In one particular case the mother a hateful mean woman who clearly disdained the child, had no interaction with him, would not take him to doctor appointments, would not let them take him off the ventilator he did not need (she would get less money from the state) and was abusive to him. The first morning on the case I told her he needed to come off the ventilator and she gave me such a look. The nurse coming on told me the pulmonary doctor had been trying to get her to bring him to his office and she canceled the appointments. The doctor wanted him off the vent. He was on tube feeding due to the tracheotomy. Once removed he could eat, I am sure the thought of him eating dinner with them horrified her.
This five year old was kept in a hospital baby crib with the bars up and a bubble on top to keep him from escaping sixteen hours a day. He was on multiple psychiatric meds he did not need including Thorazine. He could not walk in a straight line due to the severe overmedication. Then they were all surprised he had behavior problems. Who the hell wouldn’t?
The foster mother kept a detailed log to manipulate the doctors and CPS staff. We read it and realized she was making stuff up. His social worker was her friend and they spent hours on the phone gossiping. She also sabotaged the visits with his birth mother and then lied to the social worker that the birth mother did not show up. The house had lots of toys all over the place, but she only let him play with two of them. When asked why she said he threw them against the wall. Yea he probably did when he was younger just like all toddlers do. The foster parents went away for the weekend once and we let him play in the room they normally would not let him in with any toys he wanted. He was a perfect angel, not one problem.
I was pretty freaked out the whole time I was there. The woman also had the nurses doing some really odd things due to her obsessive/compulsive issues. He had tube feedings and she made us take both ends off the can with a hand crank can opener that was rusty and hard to turn and then smash the can in a certain way. I brought a garbage bag with me and took them home and disposed of them. We could only eat our lunch at one end of the table with a particular place mat. The ventilator tubing and equipment in home health is washed and reused. Normally it is taken outside and spun to remove the water, then hung up to dry. She made us sit on a blanket on the floor and dry each and every piece of it with a hair dryer. It was really weird.
I asked one nurse who was from another country how she felt about the treatment of the child. She thought it was a cultural thing, I said, “Oh, Hell no”. While giving the day shift nurse report she asked me what I thought about what was going on there. I told her how I felt and she said she had been waiting for me to get there so she had someone to back up the truth. We contacted our employer who contacted Child Protective Services. I decided to resign from the case and take the blame for the complaint to CPS as the other nurse had been taking care of the child a long time and he needed someone he could trust and I really did not like home health or pediatrics so much, I was very bored.
The state investigated and this woman was very good at manipulating. They decided to leave him in the home because really the foster parents never had any contact with him and the nurses were taking good care of him. He would not receive such attention in the state facility which was the alternative. But, the problem is the foster mother was calling all the shots and manipulating everyone including his social worker and doctors. The sad thing was his birth mother who had problems when younger was desperate to get her son back and was doing everything she could to show them she had straightened her life out. They should have facilitated her getting him if at all possible, he was unloved and abused where he was. There was also another party who volunteered to be his foster parent and allow the birth mother to visit as much as she could with the idea of her getting custody again.
It is interesting that just like the James woman this child along with a handicapped adult were kept in a converted garage. The five year old and an adult woman were in the same room. The adult who was mostly paralyzed was not allowed to come through the house to get to the only room other than the converted garage she was allowed in. We had to take her by Hoyer lift to the new garage to put her in her wheel chair. Then she was brought into the room through an outside door. If she was incontinent of urine and it got on the carpet she was punished. All she ever got to do that she enjoyed was watch videos and she took them from her. Her movement consisted of kicking her legs some. The foster mother told me when I was horrified by her actions that I just did not understand how she was, “she holds the urine on purpose so she can pee on the carpet.” That is ridiculous. It was like she felt these two medically fragile human beings in her home were parasites. She thought this woman who was neurologically deteriorated was plotting all the time just to figure out a way to pee on her carpet. If you have foster children or a group home situation your house should be designed to be cleanable and durable. The foster parents got thousands of dollars every month from the state and pocketed most of it, they were the parasites. The purpose of the money the foster parents get is so those it was intended for can get the extra help and things they need to have a decent life.
This state tried to get me to have a home for medically fragile children because they knew I would fight for their care and rights. They even promised to buy me a wheel chair van. I was not ready to be that tied down, but was sure in the future I wanted to do this. Now with the felony charge I am sure I would not be considered.
The director of OCS, Christy Lawton, when interviewed acted like they had done everything right and oh well they just can’t catch all the problems. Yes, the agency had huge problems before she got there, but why front near perfection when it’s clear you have huge problems with lack of training and other issues. I almost expected her to start blaming the victims which is standard procedure for the government of Alaska. OCS had ample opportunity with multiple complaints and went to the house on more than one occasion yet did not investigate. They decided the kids who had lived there were lying. That is how it works in Alaska. They believed her lies and did nothing. Why? There is a strange cultural habit in Alaska of thinking people of a certain class always tell the truth while those of another class always lie. This extends to business owners and landlords as well, they take complete advantage. Then there is the habit of frequently appointing people who do not have the experience to do jobs that require experience, education and skill. They are selected to support other agendas. The legislature plays it’s part in preventing agencies from operating at even a mediocre level by under-funding all of them. Not enough staff and poor training results in crappy service every time.
Many people have reported problems about OCS and been ignored. Here is my story:
In the lodge in Homer where the two meth cooking guys were with the con man landlord, Robin Hume, who along with his brother, Steve Hume, lied to the state troopers and the idiot prosecutor in Nome who relayed it to the due process blocking judge in Nome to have me wrongfully arrested there was a four year old boy. Along with him living there the guys brought underage girls for drugs, alcohol and sex. Did the state troopers care, absolutely not. I thought two of them were high school age. There were times when the boy’s father had two girls in the room all night along with the four year old. I couldn’t see what they were doing, but I’ve been around over 50 years, ok. I made a number of calls to the state trooper to which I got no response which included vandalism, thefts, threats to myself, breaking into another roommate’s room, a missing person, stealing property, spraying several CO2 fire extinguishers in a roommates room, and a lot more. The first night I was there I made a general call to make the statement that whatever those jokers were up to it had nothing to do with me. I also reported fears for this four year old and the fact that I did not want to leave the lodge until something was done about his situation. The state trooper told me he would call OCS and I also called. Considering the actions of the state troopers out of Anchor Point I would not be surprised if that call never happened, but this particular officer was better than the others so it may have.
One night I called about several serious crimes including assault threats to myself to which the state troopers did not respond. They did however come for loud music as odd as that seems because anyone who lives in Homer itself knows the Homer Police do not respond to loud music. There were two or three underage girls on the property on some kind of intoxicants as well as the little boy‘s father. They would not let the trooper in so I did. Two girls ran out the back door and were not pursued, even though the trooper saw one of them and knew she was underage. Why? For one thing the troopers who take about twenty-five minutes to get to the hill above Homer from Anchor Point work alone. Second, they hadn’t done anything about any of the other crimes, why start now. The third woman locked herself in the bedroom with the four year old. She would not let the cop in and the father of the child refused access. The trooper called his supervisor to discuss probable cause. He said they did not have probable cause to go in the room. The trooper asked me if I had seen a meth lab because the father was high on meth, yet they had no probable cause to check the welfare of a child or underage girls. In many states they can check on children pretty much any time they feel there is a problem. Why can’t they in Alaska.
Five weeks later an OCS worker and a state trooper finally showed up to check on the child and by then they were gone and I was trying to get out of there myself. She told me she knew nothing about the long length of time that had passed as she had just been hired. After listening to the director of the department, Christy Lawton’s TV interviews recently I realize that may not have been true. I did not want to leave the lodge until the child was safe and quit looking for a place to go that month. If OCS or the state troopers had done their job I may not have been wrongfully arrested in Homer by the corrupt legal system powers that be. Oh, if they could have found anything else to use to arrest me they would have, but there was nothing until two conmen came onto the scene.
When I reported this story to the govenor's office nothing happened. I have never lived in a state where they would not come in a timely manner to check on children or where those who complain about child abuse are ignored until I came to Alaska. I have never lived in a state where the police could not do a safety check on a child in potential danger until I came to Alaska. I have never lived in a state where those who try to report the problems at the level of the governor's office are lied to and hung up on until I came to Alaska. Remember, how a society treats the helpless is reflection of what they are. Now will those children not get the help they need due to the poor mental health care? Will they end up in the prison system because they have been traumatized and perhaps become chemically dependent or just can't function in society? Then will they be blamed as causing their own problems?
The one funny thing about the story was her attorney, Rex Butler, repeating the crap she told him. He isn’t smart enough to keep his mouth shut. I believe in due process and vigorous defense for everyone, but really Mr. Butler have some common sense. He said her case is complex. That was the reason he used when I called him about my case to turn it down and then he hung up on me. What he really meant was I didn’t have any money. I guess James has a lot stashed away.