Medium: When Protection Hurts

“I frequently recall one child who was asked to draw himself as a superhero. I asked him what his power would be. ‘When I grow up, my superpower is going to be to keep families together,’ he said. ‘So no kid has to go through what I am going through right now.'”

As an attorney in the Bronx Family Court, Crystal Baker-Burr has witnessed child protective services remove children from their parents without court permission or due process. She has heard directly from the children who were removed from their parents in the middle of the night — violent separations that they did not need or want. She has witnessed the impact of that trauma, which cannot be undone.

“It was through this work that I witnessed how children are separated from their families in the name of child welfare,” she said, ” even when the very children being ‘protected’ are begging, screaming, and pleading to go home.”


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