I stopped by the CNN.com website tonight, only to find this video on the front page:
much as I like Anderson Cooper and AC360, I found this entire video to
be rather unsettling. Right from the beginning this report seemed to
have a biased, condemnatory tone towards the medical staff caring for
the baby and child protective services as a whole. While the parents
may have felt that a great injustice was committed against them, I think
that the hospital staff was completely appropriate in the manner they
responded to this suspected shaken baby case. What surprises me,
though, is the fact that the other child was actually placed in foster
care for two weeks. Typically, removals are usually done only as a last
resort and if a child is suspected of being in immediate danger. It's
hard to say whether child protective services was justified in removing
the second child, and I feel that there's more to this case than what
was shown in the news report.
What bothers me most
about this video is negative portrayal of social workers as individuals
who take babies away on a whim. Social workers already have to deal
with the "baby snatcher" stereotype, and news reports like the one on
AC360 only seem to perpetuate this misconception. To me, it's safe to
say that social workers provide more help than harm to people on a daily
basis. Is it so hard for the media to run a story that isn't an
abasement of our profession?
Social work receives bad publicity from the news media yet again. I suppose this shouldn't be news at all.