Marlene McCabe is working to Get the News Media Attention on Family Law Reform

Marlene McCabe

I had to deal with CPS with my own children. They tried to terminate my parental rights but I fought back and won an appeal. I was told that I was the 2nd person in Napa County to get an extension on my family services. The judge gave me 3 more months. All I needed was 2 weeks more to complete the last thing on my list of court ordered requirements. All I needed to do was have my son spend the night 2 or 3 times during the week, to make sure I could get him to school on time and not get stuck due to my agoraphobia. That was all and I was told that their hands were tied cause my 18 months was up and there was nothing they could do about it.

The word termination would have sent me back to square one and I just couldn't handle that. I had acquired agoraphobia in 2004 and lost everything in a year. My job, my home, my kids, and then my Fiance Howard passed away Jan. 14, 2005. I was on a suicide mission for about 3 months before I snapped out of it and started to pick up the pieces of my life. So I appealed CPS's decision due to extenuating circumstances, that being Howard passing away. The Judge said she was surprised that I didn't use my agoraphobia as my extenuating circumstance. I replied, "The agoraphobia I can work on and was. But Howards death was out of my control. That was God's control." I won my appeal and was given a 3 month extension. CPS closed my case a month later giving me full custody of my son.

CPS didn't inform me of all my parental rights. They could to have given me an extension as long as they could prove to the judge that at the end of that extension my child would able to be with me. I printed out 130 pages of the family code and started going through it. I found there was a lot of parental rights that I wasn't told about. CPS is suppose to inform parents of their parental rights and I guess I just assumed that they would. I mean, why wouldn't they, right? I soon learned how selective they were on informing me of my parental rights. I began to conect the dots and realized exactly what they were doing not just to me, but to many other parents as well and why. Greed and profit!

I began running a Facebook page called Public Defender, https://www.facebook.com/publicdefendercc, to help parents know what their parental rights were and how to get their attorney to work for them and their cause. I believe that the bond between a parent and a child is God sent and should not be used for greedy purposes or for commodity reasons. You just don't mess with that bond and you don't profit from that bond. I hope to be able to change the current system that is being practiced and encourage a more balanced system of justice that this country designed it to be! What CPS is doing makes me ill and I just can't sit back and do nothing. People tell me all the time that one person can't change anything. I feel that , if nobody starts to do something, then nothing will ever get changed. Someone has to start doing something for that change to start. So I started doing something!

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