Paramours. It’s definitely a dated term more appropriately used in a daytime soap opera; however, a paramour is the antiquated and unusual term for a biological parent’s live-in significant other. It’s the term Child Protective Services uses to categorize boyfriends or girlfriends who have no biological or legal ties to the children with whom they are cohabitating, but their presence serves as a pretty obvious warning sign to CPS. Studies show adding a paramour to the equation greatly increases a child’s risk of becoming a victim of abuse and neglect by about 50%.
Michiganders in particular have been talking about Governor Rick Snyder’s State of the State address and the various plans he pitched in his River of Opportunity analogy. We can agree the system is currently broken. As we’ve stated previously, children being cared for by the State of Michigan are still falling through the cracks. But, is streamlining the whole system really the answer?
In 2012, nearly 1,600 children died in the United States—many as a result of physical abuse, neglectful starvation and malnourishment or careless parenting. This number is shocking in itself; however, what is even more concerning is the fact that a majority of these cases had previous Child Protective Services involvement. CPS knew these children were in danger, yet they were still in guardianship of those who would ultimately be responsible for their untimely death.
A lot of media attention has recently been given to child abuse, primarily due to the actions of former MVP and NFL Pro Bowler, Adrian Peterson, of the Minnesota Vikings. Several issues came to the forefront, most prominently the use of corporal punishment. There was even dialogue and debate over which races and ethnicities spanked their children more! Charles Barkey, NBA Hall-of-Famer, famously stated that every Black parent in the South would be in jail now due to their use of corporal punishment.
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