This thread in a Norwegian forum on the Child Protection Services (CPS) is about a proposal put forward by Kjell Holden, a lawyer with the licence to represent clients in Supreme Court. The background is a case where a father has been investigated for incest during two years. During these two years, he has had no contact with his daughter.
Holden’s ‘solution’ is that whenever there are accusations of incest (put forward by the other parent), the CPS should take over the care for the child. Holden says to Nettavisen:
– The police must be active and send clear signals that false accusations will be punished. The children cannot live with a mother who accuses the father of abuse that has not happened. False accusations can be as detrimental to the child as real abuse. Such accusations do themselves constitute a serious abuse of the child and can be a symptom of lacking ability to take care of the child.
False accusations are no doubt a criminal act that is detrimental to the children. There are, however, several problems with the policy that Holden proposes to introduce.
One thing is that Holden does not take into account how problematic it is to remove the children from the parent they still have. One can read about what science says about the psychological consequences of removing children from their parents at http://www.fampo.no/cps-and-research.html. Not only does general psychological knowledge advise us against removing children from their parents to easily, but we also know how children risk being treated when the CPS takes over the care for the child. A sample of articles about the treatment of CPS children can be found here.
If we shall understand what Kjell Holden proposes verbatim, he says that the CPS shall take over the care for the child when accusations of sexual abuse are being put forward – before one knows whether the accusations are true or not. As stated in Nettavisen: “Supreme Court lawyer Kjell Holden thinks the CPS should take over the care for the children when such accusations are put forward, and that the police have to investigate the cases to find out whether it has happened or not”.
In other words: “We do not know if your accusations are true or false. We will take them anyway. If you have told the truth, maybe you will get them back.” The latter part may prove not that easy, as the CPS and the Norwegian judicial system is notorious for its lack of judicial security. This can be seen from the material on the Norwegian CPS at Fampo’s website: http://www.fampo.no/cps.html. A nasty example of a case where abuse allegations lead to a care takeover can be seen here: http://www.fampo.no/six_years_old_girl_manipulated_by_psychologist.html.