Friday

Dirty Rotten Shame

Received Friday, October 22, 2010
A day in the life 10 I really like the family I nanny for. I've been with them for two years. However, there is one major problem. Their house is incredibly dirty, cluttered, and unorganized. When I first started it was just a little messy, but she did have a cleaning lady who came once every two weeks. She let the cleaning lady go for some reason and has not hired a new one (its been over a year now). She says she is going to do the cleaning but she doesn’t. She (my boss) does not want me doing any of the cleaning and honestly, I wouldn’t know where to start if she did. I do empty the dishwasher, take out the trash, and clean up after the kids. If I didn’t do it, I don’t think anyone else would. When I come in on Monday the house is disgusting. Trash is piled up everywhere, dirty dishes are overflowing the sink. When I come in every morning there are still dirty dishes sitting on the kitchen table from the previous night’s dinner. Most of the time there is still uneaten food sitting on the plates. If I don’t clean it up immediately, the 3-year-old boy will come down from his crib and sit at the table and begin eating the old food (he has done this in front of the mom before and she didn’t bat an eye). He also picks up old sippy cups that have been left out and drinks the old curdled milk. He has gotten sick a few times from doing this. The mother is a pediatrician so you’d think she’d know better. She thinks nothing of letting the gallon of milk sit out for several hours and then just putting it back in the fridge or serving the kids rotten fruit and vegetables or expired meats. I DO NOT eat a thing from their house. Their fridge looks like a science experiment. If I don’t have time to pack a lunch then I don’t eat that day. The baby flings food from his highchair all around the kitchen and it doesn’t get cleaned up. There is food caked onto the kitchen floor that I can’t even get up. They have problems with mice and rats and I have found rat turds in the kids’ toy box! They also don’t believe in baby proofing anything so there are no cabinet locks or baby gates anywhere and the baby is given free reign of the house. Most of my day is spent chasing after him cleaning up the things he has pulled off of the shelves or out of the cabinets.

I also think they are borderline hoarders. Their 6,000 square foot house is packed to the gills with toys, toys, and more toys. Many of the toys are broken or have little tiny pieces that I am constantly pulling out of the baby’s mouth. The kids have so many toys I have trouble buying them birthday and Christmas gifts because there is nothing that exists that they don’t already have. The neighborhood association sends them letters all of the time about how the outside of their house looks (if only they could see the inside). Clean clothes (which she does not want me washing) are not folded and put away, but simply thrown in piles all around the house. I often cannot find anything clean for the kids to wear. The kids are only bathed once a week so they are often dirty looking. Library books go missing never to be found, homework gets misplaced, doctor’s appointments get missed because she doesn’t remember when they are. Two of the kids are struggling in school and having some social issues due to the lack of structure. Overall, it is very chaotic. I really like the family. The mom is a sweetheart and I’m very close with the kids. The dad is kind of odd, but they treat me well and always spoil me at the holidays. I’m torn because I don’t want to leave, but I can’t stand these working conditions. I know I could find another job in a nice clean organized house, but the parents could be a total nightmare. I know I should be thankful for a steady job and income (although I do have to ask for my check every week or she will forget), the mess is just really getting to me. What would you guys do? I feel really awkward saying anything to my boss about it. I think she is a bit embarrassed by the mess (has commented on it before). Would you just suck it up and deal with it and keep telling yourself it could be worse somewhere else?

73 comments:

baby dalailama said...

wow ! you don't mention how many kids you look after but at least three i would guess from your comments. It is impossible for anyone to flourish in that kind of chaotic household. I am slightly baffled as to why you haven't brought more order to their lives in your role as nanny? It is your job to make sure that everything to do with the children is taken care of. You should make sure their clothes are washed, folded and put away in their rooms. That is a basic requirement of a nanny. You must keep the childrens rooms and playroom clean and organised. Their toys are your responsibility so if there are mountains of them all over the place then you need to sort them out. This mother obviously has trouble organising everything as well as working full time.. maybe it is just too much for her to organise a new cleaner. If i were you i would offer to do that and stress that you need someone every day until the house is clean and then agree on how many days you really need someone there. Once every two weeks is crazy. I would definitely stay with the family but be proactive in bringing about some changes so that life runs more smoothly for everyone. Obviously you are going to have to step up and do your job to its fullest extent and make sure you do more than the dishwasher and the trash. I have responsibility for everything to do with the children i look after and making sure they are showered or bathed everyday is
so basic. How can you say that they look dirty and only bathe once a week when you are their nanny? Its your job to see to that. You need to do more.

baby dalailama said...

Forgot to say.. but library books, homework and appointments for the children written down and remembered are YOUR RESPONSIBILITY.. otherwise you are really just a babysitter.. this is what being a nanny is all about.

VAnanny said...

I have to respectively disagee with baby dalailama. I have been a nanny for years and doctor's appointments have never been my responsibility unless Mom or Dad were out of town. Every nanny position is different so just because you don't take care of ALL the particulars doesn't mean you are "just a babysitter." OP, I DO agree with dalialama when she says you need to take some more initiative. I worked in a home that was messy (not filthy like the one you work in) and the only way I could stand it was to clean what I could. So my advice to you is to do what you can. Throw out those little toy pieces. I'm sure Mom won't miss them. Make a list of everything that is broken and ask if her if she would like to keep or toss. More than likely, she will want to toss. Put the children's clothes away. Clean up baby's mess. And for the love of everything holy, BATHE THEM! I guarantee you Mom will be very appreciative. You don't have to do it all but maybe your doing just a little extra will give Mom the push she needs to either hire a cleaning service or clean the house on her own.

NannyM said...

HELLS NO baby dalailama!

it is only your job as is stated in your contract. you can't help that, as a nanny, you are an extension of the parent. albeit, you have more common sense than they do.

I agree with VANanny that you can do small things such as bathe them or throw away toys that have missing pieces. small things that can make your life more simple, less stressful.

I know how it is to come in on Monday morning to a sink full of dirty dishes and the house a mess! If I could stand it being dirty I would leave it that way, then again, the house isn't 6000 sq ft either! Good luck!

baby dalailama said...

I know that Drs appointments are not always a nannies responsibility but being aware of them, writing the times and dates on a planner so they are not forgotten is something a proactive nanny would do if the parents are failing to do it themselves. How hard is it to stick a weekly planner on the fridge with homework, appointments, library due dates, play dates etc all listed? All nannies have at some point worked for parents who blow your mind with their attitudes and lack of the most basic parenting skills but you are there to make a difference.. a difference for the better and it seems like the OP is very fond of the family and doesn't really want to leave them. But it also seems she could be making more of a positive contribution to the childrens lives rather than just drifting along in the chaos. Do what needs to be done OP..

yuck said...

Doctors are secret slobs. Everyone knows that! I was once a nanny for a couple who were both doctors and they were disgusting!!!!

OP said...

OP here,

I guess I should have been more specific. My boss does not want me doing any cleaning or laundry. I asked her about the kids' laundry several times when I first started and I was told no she would do it. I also do not do the baths or schedule doctor's appointments. She specifically said she wants to do that. She takes them to the appointments (I just go along with them) so she would have to know when it's best in her work schedule. She does not work 5 days a week so she is home twice a week to take care of these things. I would do more if she wanted me to, but she would rather I spend time tending to the kids. I took it upon myself to go the store and buy groceries to make healthy dinners every night. After about a month of that she said she didn't want me to do it anymore. I do bathe them if I watch them at night--she does not want me to bathe them during the day.

As far as organizing (which would really be throwing away 50-60% of their things), I would probably be fired if I went through their things and threw a bunch of stuff out. I do throw the small pieces of toys away (I slip them into my bag so she doesn't see them in the trash because she would be upset I was throwing them away). Have you ever seen the show Hoarders? Those people can't part with anything. That is how this family is. Their house is not as bad probably because they have a lot more room for their things than most people on that show. Where would I begin? It's not just toys it's also mail, papers, packages that haven't been opened (they get on average 2-3 packages delivered daily), Xmas decorations that are still out, shoes, clothes, etc. I wouldn't know where to begin. I do spend a few hours of my day cleaning up the kids' toys and the dishes, etc. I watch 4 children so if I spent much more than that I really can't tend to the kids like I need to.

baby dalailama said...

OP thanks for the extra info.. it sounds like you are up against it.. hoarding like that is more than just being untidy and disorganised and its very hard to make them see how weird it is. I would still try and get them to agree to a cleaner coming to get things deep cleaned and then to help out a couple of times a week. Tell them how unhappy its making you and the children and say that you are willing to arrange the cleaning to be done. Its probably got so bad that she is ashamed to let anyone see it. You really have to talk about it honestly to them because nothing will change if you don't. Good luck.

abc said...

Hi all,
I've recently moved to the US so I'm not quite familiar with all your laws, but it seems to me that feces, dirty clothing, spoiled food and the effect that it has on the children's schooling is enough to call Child Protective Services. They are living in incredibly unhealthy and unsanitary conditions. Perhaps a visit from someone would shape the parents up and make them clean up their act. But again I"m not totally familiar with what necessitates calling them but this seems to make sense to me

oh no said...

OP- I am so sorry for you to have to work in these conditions. It is unhealthy for you as well as the children.
What's odd to me is that the mom is so disorganized but also so controlling...definitely sounds like a sign of hoarding.
1. Do the laundry anyway, even if she doesn't want you to. Do it on days when she's not home, and if the kids are there, make a game out of putting it away. Then at least you will have clean clothes for them.
2. Throw out broken toys. As long as there are still a lot of toys in view, she won't notice, or you can always say it's in another part of the house (hello 6,000 sq. ft!).
3. If you are not allowed to bathe them, at least make sure they are washing their faces and hands before they go out anywhere. If there are girls with long hair, tie it back so it doesn't look so dirty.
However, eventually this issue is going to come to a head, and you are going to have be very upfront, and tell her you love her family and the job, but the house needs to be cleaned. I agree with another poster, that this is bordering on a CPS call. These parents need professional help (and I don't mean just a house cleaner)

NYCMOM2 said...

Just a thought... Find a professional organizer yourself, tell employer a little white lie (organizer is a personal friend, she needs work desperately, would she please hire her...). Sounds doubtful since the mom says she will do it to most of the tasks that need to be done... but who knows?

It sounds like a serious mental health issue on the part of your employer (hoarding, maybe depression?) but if you can find a way to get a third party in there, you may be able to get her a solution without jeopardizing the employee/employer relationship...

Former Nanny said...

I agree with surreptitiously cleaning. Definitely do some laundry and put it away. Considering that the clothes are all over the place anyway, she's unlikely to notice.

Also, absolutely give them a bath! Once a week is just disgusting. If you don't wash their hair (ick, I can't believe I'm about to type this) she may not even notice that they're clean(er).

I totally agree as well that if you toss out some of the toys, they're not likely to notice. Especially since you're taking out the garbage! Best of luck to you. Hope your tetanus shots are up to date. :)

Amelia Bedelia said...

No offense,but I don't buy that your boss doesnt want you to do any laundry or cleaning. It sounds to me like it isnt in your job description and therefore you aint gonna do it. You have every right to that. But nothing slobs like more than someone to pick up after them!

rte66nanny said...

I'm not an expert on hoarding, but from what I've heard, you shouldn't throw out their stuff. And it sounds like they might be hoarders.

Maybe you should sit down and tell the mom that you love the children, love your job, but that you're truly worried about the safety of living there. Offer to help in any way you can. Perhaps she could hire professional cleaners, and you could take the kids out of the house for the day.

fairfieldcountynanny said...

Okay there is no way the nanny should have to clean up after these slobs or help them get their house and life in order. They are grown adults who need to do it for themselves. Everything you mentioned is disgusting and they probably should be reported. The children are not being cared for properly if they do not get bathed or have clean clothes to wear. They also shouldn't be allowed to eat old food/milk, what if they get food poisoning? And what about the rat problem? Have the parents called an exterminator? How could you live in such a disgusting situation? If I was you, I honestly would start looking for a new job. I don't think I could stand working in an enviroment like that for very long. And it sounds like these people will not be open to change, and clean up their house if they are indeed hoarders. I would start looking for a new position, and then give 2 weeks notice, perhaps stating that you needed a job with more hours, or closer to home. I wouldn't want to hurt their feelings or embarass them by saying you are quitting because they are slobs. And plus you always need a reference from them. Well good luck with whatever you decide OP, I wish you the best.

ericsmom said...

I agree with ABC. Why not call social services? If the homeowners association is complaining the way they keep their property, the family will assume it must be one of the members that called.

Or just tell her you love them but can't work under the circumstances. Maybe, she will budge and get a cleaning person once a week???

remaining anonymous said...

Option 1: Bathe the kids and give an excuse- "We were playing in the mud today" if she asks you about it. Do laundry and buy fresh groceries on the sly. See how long you can keep up that masquerade.
Option 2: Make an anonymous call to CPS, and let them sort it out.
Option 3: Be upfront with the mom that the home needs to be cleaned, and when she doesn't take action, call CPS anyway.
Basically, OP, the children are being neglected, and if you don't either provide them with proper care (which is difficult due to mom's instructions) or make a report, you become complicit in the neglect. Unfortunately I do not see any way around this, and things are likely going to go south with the family when this occurs.

Thejewishnanny said...

Doctors are secret slobs. Everyone knows that! I was once a nanny for a couple who were both doctors and they were disgusting!!!!

LIES. I was a nanny for four separate dual physican families are they were clean. Don't make blanket statements.

OP, Girl, I don't even know where to begin with this. I'm not anal retentive, but I could not work in that enviroment for a hott second! I realize they are not doing their part, but neither are you.

You need to sit BFFF/Sweetheart mom down and lay it on her. You may need to dedicate a few days to this but it needs to be done.

The two of you need to go through ALL the toys. Most must be thrown away or donated. if she really is a hoarder then you have to throw the broken toys away yourself as you organize the children's toys.

Next, you need to go through the 'fridge with her. Clean it out. And after that you can take a few extra minutes a day to throw away old or spoiled food. Tell her it is unacceptable to come into a working enviroment where there is left over food all over the table, AS THIS ATTRACTS RODENTS, AND YOU HAVE SEEN THEIR SHIT IN THE CHILDREN'S TOYBOX!!!

If she rinses the dishes from the night before and wipes down the table you will take care of them, but she needs to do her part. SCHOOL HER.

As a nanny, you should be on top of laundry, book bags, homework, gloves, library books, etc, so those should not be things that are in your list of grievances. Regardless of what she says, do the kid's laundry. Fold it and put it away. Be responsible for their things, and this includes their bedrooms and their toys.

You then must INSIST that she hire a heavy duty cleaning service to clean the disgusting house, someone to take the shit all over her yard with, and finally, a new housekeeper, and offer to help her find these services.

You need to be proactive because she clearly can't be ,and the fact that YOUR areas are also messy means that you are contributing to the problem. If you are too chicken shit to confront this woman whose filth is endangering her children's very lives, then you are JUST AS GUILTY for the nasty sippy cups and if you get bit in the face by a rat you have no one to blame but yourself.

TC said...

OP depending on where you live you might be required to report then to CPS. Where I live if you know a child is being abused (abuse does not mean just beating a child) and you don't report it you can be held just as liable as the person abusing the child

Living in a filthy house is unsanitary to say the least and the spoiled food could cause sickness as well as the rats and their droppings both which carry disease.

Please Please Please report them, do it anonymously and then lie straight through your teeth, pretend youre a teacher who overheard a student talking about his/her disgusting homelife.

TC said...

baby dalailama, it is NOT the nanny's job unless she is told that is her job

I've been a nanny for the same family for 3 years and I was hired to watch the kids. I was not hired to do housework which is essentially what you are trying to say the op needs to do. A nanny takes care of the kids, a nanny does not wash clothes, wash dishes, clean up from last nights dinner or give baths UNLESS that's what she and the parents decided.

They need a MAID to do the other things.

A nanny shouldn't have to take the child to the doctor or even schedule the appointments unless, again, that was what she and the parents decided on.

I don't do things like that. I have never once taken the kids to the doctor alone, and I've never once made an appointment for them to go to the doctor.

Been there! said...

OP, I am sorry that you are put in this position and that you also have to watch the children live like this! Many years ago I used to babysit for this family who had the most disgusting home!!! I mean dog poo stuck into the carpet and urine(probably from the cat, dog, & kids,)food left out, basically the same story you told. Their house was so gross I wouldn't even touch the remote!! I would bring a book. I would eat either before I arrived or after I left. My favorite was when the diaper bin was so full they would just set diapers next to it instead of taking it out! Finally I had enough so I had to tell them I could no longer babysit for them because their house was unhealthy. She was not happy with my reason, but asked what I was refering to and I simply said it's unsanitary, dangerous to be in, and deeply concerning for me to the point I feel she needs to seek help from a professional organizer. And it's serious.

Well, first off this is not so simple and far bigger than you! You cannot just start cleaning things up and throwing things away. Even tho they may be hoarders they are your employer and you are there to care for the kids so if you directly disobey the boss you could get fired. Then you can do nothing to help at all. Secondly, I agree by standing by and doing nothing is just as bad. I understand your hands are tied but if you do not take some serious action nothing will get better EVER! Last but not least,this is neglect and abuse! You as a nanny must report these people to CPS!!!! No if's and's, or but's about it! You where hired to care for these children, and you owe it to the children to not to suffer in this environment. It's no different than if a teacher suspects neglect or abuse to call CPS so why can't a nanny that cares for these children in their home do the same.

NortheastNannyfrommidwest said...

My first family was like this. 2 Sweetheart boys, and the parents, albeit, the dad a bit odd, but the mom to this day still a sweetheart, and I truly feel like I'm part of their family.
The dad is a doctor, mom CEO and both are never home, the house is HUGE, at least 6,000sqft, and a TOTAL ****hole. Dirty dishes, 3 cats, and even though the boys are 16 and 18, their are still toys from when they were 5, and strollers and cribs, and the house is just a mess mess mess. I feel for you, I really do. I stuck it out for 4 years, even with a weekly cleaning service, and then just couldn't take it any longer!

I would just to make your life easier as people have mentioned, keep a planner with you or on the fridge, that states times and due dates and appts. You are definitely the nanny, and it's your job. I would also, being the nanny, bathe each kid, at least once a day, as that is also your job. It may not be stated in a contract, but unless your title is "driver" and "food giver", your also entitled to giving children their baths and what not...Good Luck!

Village said...

The good news is those kids are going to have immune systems that would stop a truck.

RE the housekeeping, I'd say, 'Hon, you need to get another housekeeper. Can I help with that?' And be prepared to pay a chuck up front for deep cleaning to get the house in order.

RE the toys. You take out the trash. Start throwing away broken toys and small pieces. They're trash, right?

MONKEYSHINES said...

I was a nanny for a surgeon and the house, wife and kids were discusting! When I got there monday mornings the kids would be in the clothes I left them in on friday. The parents didnt want to be bothered with the 6 month old and 18 month old with around 4 bottles each of fruit punch so they would just drink all night long. I got to work at 8am and they would still be in bed, soaking wet and blue lips because the mom was to lazy to put pjs on them! They would wet through everything and lie ina wet crib resulting in blue lips because they were cold! I did the best I could but dem parents are so dumb.
They just didnt care!

MissMannah said...

Start looking for another job because this one is not going to get better. Hoarding is a mental condition and no amount of "let me help you clean your house" is going to change the situation. She needs help you simply cannot provide. You can, however, help the children by getting them the hell out of that house. Call CPS. TC is right, nannies are mandated reporters in instances of neglect, which this clearly is.

As for everyone saying OP should take initiative to clean up stuff herself, if she's tried it already and it hasn't worked, it isn't going to work this time! All it is going to do is make the mom mad because she will feel more embarrassed and disrespected. Plus, it is ludicrous to suggest she should be doing the cleaning/organising/bathing/keeping track of doctor's appts and school work. If the nanny is expected to do all this, without being asked, why do these children have parents?

Dear Abby just said...

It sounds like these parents have a deep-rooted mental illness..one that people now a days are starting to understand and truly empathize with. These parents are hoarders and need more than a simple housekeeper to solve their problem. They are in dire need of professional help and if they don't get it soon, I shudder to think of what their home will look like in the future (and their poor children!!) They need either professional counseling and/or medication. You can try to encourage them to get help and even offer to do whatever you can to assist them in the process whether it be bathing the kids or doing a load of laundry, etc. But do not not throw anything out with out their permission because hoarders get homicidal when their possessions are compromised..it sounds so irrational but are part of this "disease." About calling CPS, it's your call OP. I can see both sides of the argument, but from a personal perspective, as a child it would have been more traumatic for me to be pulled out of my secure home and from my loving parents care than for me to live in a pigs sty. But that is just one person's opinion and you need to make the decision. You may think you are doing right FOR the sake of the children, but remember how you felt about your parents when you were a kid. Your parents were your world and I bet it was simply unimaginable to think you would ever be separated from them ever...you probably would have lived in a filthy house than lose the privilege of living with them.

cali mom said...

OP, how awful! I haven't got to the bottom of the comments yet so sorry if it's been suggested, but, what if you mentioned to the mom that a friend of yours had recently hired a "professional organizer" to help her get her house in order and she was amazed and delighted at the difference, and is telling everyone about how wonderful it was and highly recommends the organizer and gave you the info because she knew "YOU" were thinking of doing it also? You could undertake some research in advance of course, and get a name and rates of a couple of people who seem good?

If she still blows it off, I'm snot sure what can be done, as calling social services is a big step. If the outside of their house is all piled and crappy as well, you COULD call the city's public health department who would order then to clean up that part, and as you say the neighbors have also complained, it wouldn't be obvious who had called and MAYBE it would nudge them to continue with the inside of the house?

cali mom said...

LOL, "not", not "snot"!

Rocket Scientist said...

Wow, I'm really glad we have baby dalailama and others here to tell us the definition of a nanny. However I prefer to stick with a more reliable source.

From Merriam-Webster.com:

"Definition of NANNY: a child's nurse or caregiver "

From dictionary.reference.com:

"nan·ny
a person, usually with special training, employed to care for children in a household."

OP, this is a tough one. I don't encourage you to do any work behind your employer's back. That can only breed an even more uncomfortable work environment. Do you want to always be looking over your shoulder? Not to mention the fact that the older children would be involved in any lies to the parents. They would know they had not played in mud, for instance, and be forced to make a choice: remain silent (thereby being complicit in the lie), or possibly even tell direct lies to their parents if questioned, or rat out their nanny who is trying to help them. To me, this is an unacceptable choice.

I also don't see how you could keep going from this point without taking any action. Something needs to be done to provide a safe environment for these kids, in which they can be healthy and happy.

I don't see any harm to the children if you gently address the issue with the mother. She may not like it, so you would have to be the judge of how much risk this would pose to your job. If she would be receptive, and if real, positive change could come about, I see this as the best option.

If you do not feel comfortable approaching your boss on the topic, or if that does not help the situation, I do believe you should anonymously report this situation. How many diseases could be hiding in the rodent feces? How many injuries could the children sustain from the broken or choking-hazardous toys? What of the spoiled, dangerous food they are being given?

And, how much would their lives, schoolwork, health, play, relationships (both family and with friends--they surely can't be having play dates in this environment), and general happiness be improved if the situation were resolved?

Of course it is preferable for the children to stay with their parents, but not at the expense of their safety.

I hope you find a way to help these kids! Let us know how it goes, please!

cali mom said...

Caught up and now posting again. OP, I would try just for a couple of days throwing out broken stuff as you run across it, and I bet they wouldn't even notice with all the mess going on. It's not like you have to announce to them that you did them a favor by throwing out a mountain of their beloved crap. Just a few small problematic things, and see how that works. If they do notice and ask, just say that since it was broken, you assumed they would want it thrown out and apologize if they would rather have kept it and see what they say.

And yes, wash their faces and hands and keep their hair looking tidy, if you feel it's impossible to bathe them without causing major issues.

Just my two cents said...

I agree with you Dear Abby, that people say "just call CPS on them" yet they do not put themselves in the shoe of the poor children. If there is not immediate family in the area, chances are they will be put in either an orphanage type home (halfway house, etc.) where they will have to live with children who either are orphans, are in the system for either parental abuse/neglect or delinquents. Or they could be placed in a foster home and it will be up to the court system to see if they are ever allowed to return home. Meanwhile, they will probably be forced to switch schools and leave their friends. These kids will have many emotional problems to deal with and may need years of therapy to deal with being unexpectedly uprooted from the security of home and family into the unknown. Shame on all of you who say "Call CPS" like you would say "Call the pizza guy!!"

social worker said...

repost for anonymous
I am a social worker and I believe a CPS report is absolutely the way to go here. They are NOT gonna take those kids away - this is neglect not abuse and they look at removal as a last resort They ARE gonna send someone out to examine the living conditions and make a care plan with the parents which will include things about minimum hygiene standards. If the parents fail to comply by the follow up visit and no improvements are seen then they will threaten temporary removal of the children.
As you say the children are suffering in school and socially so these are big issues that have to be addressed. You can make an anonymous report and they will keep it confidential.

Just my two cents just now said...

I have to disagree with social worker here. I think removing the children is a possibility in a situation such as this and as long as it is a possibility..no matter how remote it is, it would be best not to take that route. The risk is too much. I imagine that laws differ from state to state and that ultimately it is up to the discretion of whoever sees the house. None of us has seen just how bad the condition of the home is and if it is in really bad shape, the children could be removed for health and safety reasons. I think the better approach would be to err on the side of caution and focus on helping the parents while keeping the family in tact. I believe the focus should be on getting mental help for the parents.

Lola said...

Unless real emotional/physical/sexual abuse is going on, DO NOT call CPS. The government is a machine not a caring grandparent! Mess is not going to hurt anyone. Throw out dangerous toys and old food. Calling CPS can result in the kids being placed in foster homes (and possibly seperated) where god knows what will happen to them, and they will CERTAINLY not be in the care of anyone who truly loves them. Putting children in state care should be a LAST resort, but unfortunately in some states, it is done all too easily. And who suffers? The children. Anyone who cries 'Call CPS', has apparently never seen the actions of the machine first hand.

Barb said...

I did a temp job a few times a week for about a year..their house was awful..dirty dishes with curdled milk, toys everywhere, mold growing on the dishes, etc. Their van had millions of bugs flying around. It got worse as time went on. The crazy thing was, the mom and dad always acted like it was normal to live like that. Kids were filthy and nannies were not allowed to bathe them..mom had serious issues-i actually wonder if she experienced trauma. I moved on after the bugs in the van..

Thejewishnanny said...

cali mom said...
"I'm snot."

YES YOU ARE, and a judgemental, sanctimonious one at that. I'm glad you used this forum to come out, you snotty snot!

MissMannah said...

"The government is a machine, not a caring grandparent"? Lola, I don't know where you live, but in my state, IF (and that is a huge if) they are going to remove a child from his home, the first place he's going is to the grandparents' if possible. CPS does hate to remove children if it isn't necessary, because they really do care about families.

"Mess is not going to hurt anyone." That's probably true, but rat poo and spoiled food might.

And as for two cents saying we haven't seen the home, you're absolutely right. And it is up to the discretion of whomever goes in and sees it. That would be the OP. She sees it up close and personal everyday so it is her discretion if she thinks CPS should be made aware. The rest of us are just expressing our own personal opinions.

Rocket Scientist said...

Lola and Just my two cents:

I don't think anyone here is saying to call CPS without cause or willy-nilly. But the situation that OP has described is dangerous!! It is neglectful! It is not just a "mess." Of course it would be better for the situation to be resolved without government involvement, as I and others have acknowledged. If one of the strategies suggested here would be successful, that would be amazing and everyone here would be pleased. However, if nothing OP does or can do will fix this situation, then more serious measures need to be taken.

Would you even for one second allow your child to play in this environment? I doubt it.

What if the baby eats the rodent feces? Or chokes on a broken toy? What if one of the children gets salmonella poisoning and has to go to the hospital? Isn't it enough that the children have to deal with poor performance in school, sickness as a result of drinking curdled milk, possible injury around every corner, and social problems? Do they really need a hospital visit or worse due to their parents' neglect?

Everyone has heard horror stories about bad foster homes, but there are also wonderful foster homes where children are loved and cared for. I know such foster parents personally, and God bless them! Obviously a bad foster home would not be good for the children. But neither is their current environment. And as Social Worker said, this situation may never have to reach the point of the children's removal from the home.

If OP's efforts do not bring about lasting, positive change, what other choice does she have? These children need an advocate!

TheOriginalDenverNanny said...

Social Worker is correct: calling CPS doesn't mean kids get taken away. In most states, that is the very last resort and the first vist would likely end in counseling and a followup--especially as the parents are doctors and would (hopefully) correct the problems in order to avoid the negative publicty(if nothing else).
If the home is REALLY bad enough to be deemed unsafe by CPS, then the kids shouldn't be living there, right?

Just my two cents just now said...

I still stand by my opinion that CPS should not be involved. It is apparent that the parents are mentally ill and suffer from a hoarding disorder which requires counseling and/or medication as it is a form of OCD that needs to be treated. If the OP can convince the parents to seek professional help, then that is the only solution to this problem. Sure, CPS may not take the kids..but they may take the kids. Even if there is a 1% chance they will, I still would err on the side of caution. I have seen the show COPS where the children are removed from their parents because the electricity is off because the parent could not pay the bill or there was no food in the fridge that night because the parent did not get paid until the next day. Living in a messy house is comparable to these situations and I just would not take the chance that these children would be removed. Someone mentioned the grandparents could step in...and I would be all for that...IF there were a set of grandparents near by. But w/no immediate family in the area, they sadly will go into a group home or a foster home. Sure, there are some loving foster homes, but there also are some people who take in foster kids just for the monthly stipend. My personal opinion in matters involving children is to not take any chances and always err on the side of caution...ALWAYS.
OP..please do not call CPS!! Once the government is involved, then it is out of your hands. It sounds perhaps irrational,but if these kids had a choice to live in a filthy pigsty vs. not see their parents on a daily basis..they would choose their parents no doubt. The love and attachment that children have for their parents is unconditional...whether a parent is a felon, a drug addict or keeps a messy house. Kids NEED their parents, esp. young ones and if there is even a remote chance they will lose them...they will be the ones who suffer in the end.

Rocket Scientist said...

Just my two cents, you said:

"If the OP can convince the parents to seek professional help, then that is the only solution to this problem."

I'm sorry, but that is NOT the only solution to this problem! As I said before, I think we can all agree that would be the BEST solution, but it is not the only one. What if she tries but can't convince the parents to do so? Should she leave these children to face constant danger due to their home environment? Maybe you think that sounds dramatic, but it is the sad truth. They are in danger. Danger of food poisoning, being bitten by possibly disease-carrying rodents, injuring themselves with unsafe "toys", stunted development due to improper nutrition, etc. etc. etc!
------------
"I have seen the show COPS where the children are removed from their parents because the electricity is off because the parent could not pay the bill or there was no food in the fridge that night because the parent did not get paid until the next day. Living in a messy house is comparable to these situations."

Two things here:
First, "living in a messy house" may be comparable to those situations, but the house OP describes is FAR beyond "messy."
Second, I would bet a month's rent that children do not get taken away from their parents based on those grievances unless the parents have shown a consistent inability or unwillingness to do what it takes to properly care for their children. In other words, CPS would have been monitoring them for some time without any signs of improvement before children would be removed for such a reason as having the electricity shut-off.
------------
"My personal opinion in matters involving children is to not take any chances and always err on the side of caution...ALWAYS."

Mine is, as well. That is why I believe that if OP cannot help the parents in this situation, someone who CAN help (CPS) should be called in to do so. Living in this house cannot be the happy childhood you paint it to be. I would choose to err on the side of caution, "caution" here meaning that the children will be safe, which they clearly are not at this point.
------------
"[The children] will be the ones who suffer in the end."

They already are suffering.
------------

I'm really not trying to be inflammatory. I am simply baffled by your continued stance that under no circumstances should CPS be called in order to help this family. If every single suggestion given here as a way of remedying the situation fails, would you then agree that these parents are neglecting and endangering their children? And if so, wouldn't you agree that more drastic measures must be taken?

Tales from the (Nanny)Hood said...

The parents need professional mental help, based on what OP has said. Due to the hoarding the parents are doing, the children are living in filth.

Maybe the kick in the pants the parents need that will help them see they have a problem is a visit from CPS?

Nannies are mandated reporters. If you are aware of a situation that qualifies as neglectful or abusive you are required by LAW to contact CPS. No, it's not an easy step to take, but it is neccessary.

Good luck.

Bostonnanny said...

Cps will not remove the child at the first visit, they will give the parents a chance to clean up the mess and set a date for the second visit. Cps will never remove a child unless they feel the child is in immediate danger and they will contact family members before they place a child in foster care.
With the parents being doctors and well off, and the children showing no signs of physical abuse, they will prob be giving mulitple chances to clean up.

CPS does not want to put children in foster care if it can be helped, it costs to much for the government and is emotionally stressful on a child.
Plus they hire a nanny, so cps doesn't see that as neglect because there is someone caring for the children.

Why does everyone assume the first thing CPS is going to is remove the children?
I know for a fact in MA cps doesn't even do that for abuse, I went to the police station with my hound brothers after my mother chased us around the house with a knife and you know what happened? The police called my aunt and cps came by a week later to check the situation then never returned. It was a fucking joke, after years of abuse they did nothing.
They just don't have the time or resources to much.

Rocket Scientist said...

Wow Boston, that really sucks. I'm glad you got through it and are now a loving nanny!

Also, you are completely correct! Calling CPS is not the equivalent of removing children from their homes. That is always the last resort. I hope my previous comments were clear on that point, but in reading them again, maybe my other points got in the way of that one.

costanza said...

OP,
I have a great idea. Why don't you take a pic of the worst common room in the house - bathroom, kitchen, den, living room - whatever. And then send it to ISYN? That way it will give us readers something to truly debate about whether CPS should be called - because without the photos, we can only surmise what kind of filth they are really living in.

Everybody's opinion of "messy" differs! To some (like my mom) a couple of dishes in the sink is unacceptable!

Just my two cents just now said...

I have read the OP's original post and I still do not think CPS should be called! Even the OP does not mention calling them...she is merely concerned with her working conditions and such. People are saying on here that in all likelihood the children would not be removed and that even if they were, there would be a relative to take over and/or a loving foster home to put the kids in. People are saying that probably the children would not be removed..that it is only a last resort, but I still do not think it is worth the risk. I think the lack of structure and the rotten food is pretty bad, but I don't think it warrants a call to CPS. Imagine if the nanny calls and then the family suspects it was the Nanny..which I am sure they will figure out. She will lose her job and the parents will possibly lose custody. We do not know which state the OP's family lives in, so no one is sure what exactly will happen to the precious children involved here. It is ultimately up to the discretion of the state the family resides in along w/the case worker assigned to the family. I think calling CPS is only necessary when sexual or physical abuse is involved. I have three children and when they were younger it was hard to keep up w/everything as I worked and went to school. There were times when the house was a huge mess and that the clothes were not folded for days after they were washed. There could have been expired milk in the fridge that my kids could have drunk..who knows? There could also have been times when there were mouse droppings around. When they were younger in fact, we used to rent an older house from this woman and there actually were mice that used to come out at night once we turned off the lights!! I called the landlord and she laughingly told me to either get a cat or use a jar to catch them. Well, eventually we did move out, but it took 6 months for us to do it as I was a struggling working single mother at the time. There were also times that my kiddos were filthy as I was too exhausted to bathe them as much as I should have.:(
Parents are not perfect and we all do the best we can. This family needs to see a doctor and be possibly put on medication for their illness. Just like alcoholism, they need help. Not a call to CPS. CPS is backlogged already and they only should have to deal with legitimate cases of true neglect and abuse.
I like your idea Constanza....you are right on the money...none of us knows how bad the house it. A messy house is very subjective and what is messy to one is actually clean to another. But if OP does this...then she will be attacked for posting the pics..but I do see your point. We are all debating this situation, but none of us has seen just how "messy" this house really is. LOL.

Rocket Scientist said...

You were a single mother who was working and going to school. You were probably short on money, time, and other resources, yes? Maybe you didn't have anyone close by to help you (as you keep mentioning that the family in question may not have grandparents around). And yet you were doing your best to get your kids out of that situation and working toward a better life for them.

These parents are doctors who employ a nanny and have employed a housekeeper in the past. They have every resource available to them, and yet they do nothing, for two whole years, to improve the situation wherein their children could be seriously harmed. Yes, it may be due to mental illness. Children deserve to be safe no matter what the root cause of the situation.

The two situations described are not the same.

Now of course, it's true that none of us have seen the house. We are only responding based on the OP's description and our own opinions. And no, OP did not mention CPS, only her working conditions. (And I will repeat, I believe CPS should only be called if OP tries but cannot find any way to help this family without calling them.) But let me ask you this: If she can barely stand working there, won't even eat a single item of their food, how do you think the children feel?

Do not forget that this mother REFUSED to have healthy meals made for her children.

Rocket Scientist said...

Wait a second, hold the phone!!! I just read through you last comment again. Are you saying that children should live with their alcoholic parents?! Their alcoholic parents who at any time could have them in the car while driving drunk, could go into a drunken stupor and not do anything to care for their children for days, could do any number of things because they are not in control of themselves or what goes on around them? Are you really saying that?


And, yes, OP may not stay with the family for long if she ends up having to call CPS. But if it were me, I would be willing to look for a new job if it meant that the parents got some sense knocked into them and started doing what's right for their precious kids!

Bostonnanny said...

Just my two cents, I understand your right to your opinion but there is something really flawed in it. You should look into CPS in your area and research how they work because if physical abuse is the only reason to call then I shutter to think how many children you would allow to suffer.
I am surrounded by Therpists and social workers, my boyfriend and I are both sw majors and his mother and a few of my employers are psychologists plus we know a few social workers working with children. They should be called in situations like this because this would be a case of neglect and unsafe living conditions. And again I stress that they will not remove the children unless multiple visits show no improvement.
I understand CPS is a last resort but your reasoning for not calling is insane.

Bostonnanny said...

Also do you not realize that emotional and verbal abuse is just as painful or worse then physical?
Imagine your parent telling you they hate you, wish you were never born, that you were ugly and stupid everyday. Do you not think a child should be taken out of a home like that? Do you think not showing your child affection is not a type of abuse? Because looking back at my childhood I wish everyday someone had taken me away, that family members realized the impact of emotional abuse was.

Children now are killing themselves because of bullying look at that hs in Ohio were 4 students in the last 2years committed suicide. That was from peers, imagine your parents doing it to you.

I know this is not related to the op but I want just my two cents to realize physical abuse is not the only reason to call.

Bostonnanny said...

I keep re reading your post and get angrier, unsafe living conditions is TRUE neglect. And even small signs of neglect should be reported because you never know when it could turn into something worse. One day its a black eye, the next time it's a broken rib until one day it's death. It sounds extreme but it happens everyday because people turn a blind eye.

In this case, it could be food poisoning, next a broken bone from falling over junk laying around, then maybe death due to drinking cleaning products left out or the house burning down cuz one of the broken toys caught on fire when left by the fire place.

FLNanny said...

OP,
Sounds like these people could be borderline hoarders. I would refrain from throwing toys or items away with permission from the parents first. Perhaps, you can get the kids to help you organize them a little, and put all the broken ones in a tupperware, then ask the parents about trashing or donating the stuff. It may be eaiser if they can see exactly what you are referring to, all in one place.
As far as the laundry goes, I used to work for a woman who did not want me to do the laundry either, bc she was big on certain things not going in the dryer, etc....but there is no reason you shouldn't be able to fold what you know is clean and put it away. If you have to rummage through piles for clothes, I doubt she would even notice the clean clothes piles were getting smaller....and it will certainly help you in the morning rush to know there are some clean clothes in the drawer.
What if you try bathing the kids in the morning? She may want to do it herself at night, but just not have time. I bet she wouldn't object if she came home one day and noticed the kids were clean. When you get there on Mondays, make the youngest a fresh sippy cup and stick it in the fridge so when he comes into the kitchen, he isn't tempted to go for the "bad stuff" left out. As a nanny, it definitely helps to try and be proactive wherever you can.....even though it may not be your responsibility, you will feel better knowing you are doing what you can, and the kids will feel better being clean and not drinking bad milk. :o)

ButtonMoon said...

There's a lot of posts here, but I'd like to pop one in at the end.

As a borderline hoarder myself, I have a pretty good idea what OP is talking about, especially if the mother is embarrassed but unwilling (or unable) to do anything about it. That's how I get with friends when they see the clutter, but the idea of getting rid of anything makes me uneasy.

Hoarding is a mental problem, just cleaning up won't do anything. Generally after a token effort to throw out all the crap and clean the place it goes right back to the way it was within a matter of weeks or even days. As for the rat droppings and rotten food, there have been hoarders who had to use empty paint tins and buckets for their waste because they've filled the bathroom with too much junk. Hoarders are very good at ignoring filth until it collapses in on them, and having children doesn't change that.

There's a couple of things you can do to help them:

* The mother may say that she wants to do the laundry or bathe the kids herself, but rather than suggest it as part of your job description say you'd like to teach the kids a bathtime song or you want to get them to learn how to fold clothes. That way she won't feel like you think she can't cope.

* Get rid of the rotten food, and cite that you were making your own lunch when you noticed it was off.

* Have a basin or tub (kind of like a busboy's) to dump the dirty dishes into when you arrive. Get the children to help you and it'll take minutes to get that stuff away.

* Suggest gently that they might look into hiring a new cleaner, just to keep on top of things. You could say it's because you spend so much time cleaning that you can't play or do crafts with the children.

These parents obviously care about their children, they've hired a caring nanny to look after them and they probably don't what to live like this, it's just gotten out of control.

Brenda K. Starr said...

Wow...how did calling CPS get into this conversation?? OP tells us she hates her working conditions and all of a sudden people are telling her to call CPS on the family? Congrats to you FL Nanny for staying on topic and keeping this discussion flowing nicely. Boston Nanny, I agree that mental abuse is abuse, but it seems that there are no signs of abuse here. Seems like the parents are very ill and need immediate professional help as opposed to calling a Child Welfare Agency on them. OP only asked us if she should stay at the job or move on, not if she should call CPS on the family. Stick to the topic guys please.

Nanny Staffer said...

Wow,For some reason the mother does not want the nanny to touch anything..I do agree that a nannies role is to keep the children organized,clean,homework taken care of fed etc..so maybe in a round about way you can let her know that you would like to make sure these things are set for the kids but respect her not wanting you to touch anything else..however..when does it become a health hazard and when are you doing way more than you are being paid for? It's hard to believe this woman is a doctor..the health field when her house is so unhealthy. At some point you have to make a decision if you want to be in that environment. Rats and mice harbor some serious diseases that can actually kill a human being. If you have a good rapport with the mom I would sit down and speak with her and maybe ask her if there is anything you can do to help her and she shouldn't be embarrassed that you feel close enough that you can ask her if she needs your help and you would be happy to do it.

Nanny Staffer said...

One more thing I want to say. As the Temporary Coordinator for a Nanny staffing agency,not only do we screen our nannies but we also screen our families. We would not send a nanny into a home with conditions like this and expect her to flourish at her job. Nannies are mandated reporters the nice thing about working with an agency however, is that the Nanny can go back to the Agency representative and let them know what is happening with their position and we can help them speak with the family if they would like us to. THe backing of an Agency is a very helpful tool when dealing with delicate nanny and family situations.

Just My Two Cents just now said...

OP, can you please let us know what you finally did about your position? Did you end up moving on and telling the family why? Even though we did veer off topic briefly, I hope you did in fact ignore the CPS advice and decide to just simply move on. If you did, you did the right thing for everyone involved.
Good Luck to you. :)

Rocket Scientist said...

Geez, it's only been four days since OP's post, and advice is still coming in, although at a slower rate. Of course we would like to know what happens, but this is a big decision for her, give her some time!

Also, please educate yourself. Children need advocates. That is the purpose of ISYN. We were simply suggesting ways for OP to help the family and encouraging her to help her charges through whatever means necessary should her own efforts turn out to be unsuccessful.

not an option said...

I work in child welfare, and this is what usually happens: CPS will investigate, and if the case is founded, the family will be offered preventive services, which is basically a plan of things the family needs to accomplish before the case is closed. In this case, it would likely include a thorough house cleaning and linking the parents to mental health services, and making sure the kids are up-to-date with medical appointments. Based on OP's description of the mom, it could very well be the only way to get them to clean up the house.
As a mandated reporter, it's not up to the nanny to decide if the kids would be better off having CPS involved or not. She is obligated to report neglect, which this seems to be, based on inadequate housing and food, as well as possible medical neglect.

Just My Two Cents Just Now said...

Everyone keeps saying what probably will happen and what most likely will happen, etc...but I still have not read anything on this post that sways me that the children will be able to stay with the parents. I first and foremost believe that the children should be allowed to remain at home while the parents either get therapy or medication for their OCD Hoarding disorder. In theory, the children shouldn't have to leave the home and the parents should be assisted by the proper authorities to get the help they so desperately need. But I know that life does not work the way we believe it should and that at times life is unfair. I have a neighbor who got into a fight w/her boyfriend about seven years ago and the police arrested her and put her four small children into a group home for 72 hours while she was in jail. Turns out they never filed charges against her because the boyfriend was overcome with guilt and told the police he actually self mutilated himself (faked injuries) to avoid being the one at fault as he was on probation and didn't want a violation. Theoretically, the children SHOULD NOT have even been removed from their mother at all, but again..life is not fair and the police only did what they felt was the right thing at the time. The oldest children were in middle school at the time and I am sure what happened to them is an experience they will never forget. I am an advocate for children...guess my side tends to be on the side of caution.

Bostonnanny said...

Just my two cents,

Look into CPS in your state asap.
Your neighbors situation has a completely different impact. She was a suspect of domestic assault, in which case the police did the right thing. Whether what happened was true or not they did what was best for the children and got them out of a danagous situation. All they had to go on was the boyfriends assault charge which must have looked convincing since police mostly side with women. So they took the children away to make sure she didn't abuse them, since all the evidence pointed to a volient nature.
Her children prob went into an emergency foster home for the first night then to a group home for the next two day because they were older and she prob had no family to take them.
Honestly I see nothing wrong with what happened, she was obviously in an unhealthy relationship and it could have been prevented. CPS did their job and made sure the children were safe and charges were dropped before allowing them back to a possible danagous situation.

And this situation has nothing to do with OPs case, there is no violence or police involvement, just possible neglect. Which is Handeled differently.

Just my two cents someone has seriously misinformed you and scared you into believing CPS are bad people.

Just My Two Cents Just said...

Boston Nanny..I never said that CPS were bad people..where in any of my posts did I specify such a thing? I would never call anyone a "bad person" if their job is to advocate for people,esp.children. I believe that there are many situations where a child should be removed from the home, i.e., sexual/physical abuse,etc. I just don't believe that a messy house is one of those situations. Sure OP mentions some gross stuff, but if things were really bad and happened on a consistent basis, I truly believe she would be more concerned with the children's welfare as opposed to just asking for advice on whether or not she should stick with a job, don't you?

Bostonnanny said...

Just my two cents, there lies the issue you assume cps is going to remove the children in this particular situation. And the fact of the matter is if they do then they found that their living situation was completely unacceptable and dangerous and they should tak the children. Abuse has many forms and just because someone isn't beating their children doesn't mean they aren't being abused or in dangerous enviroment.
Op should use cps as a last option, if all else fails. She is required by law too.

Call them already said...

"My two cents"- If you want to keep being dramatic about what COULD happen (OMG, the kids will get taken away and never returned), let's try it this way: What will happen to the NANNY when somebody else reports and they charge the nanny with neglect for allowing it to go on and participating in this negligence?! She will NEVER be able to get another job working with children, because she'll have this charge FOREVER!!!

Just My Two Cents Just Now said...

That is a new one..a nanny being charged for not reporting a messy house. I have never heard of anything like that before. C'mon guys...this is getting a little outrageous, don't you think? Suspected sexual/physical abuse, yes that I can understand. But a messy house??! I think this is a gray area. Anyway, the economy is in bad shape now and resources of all kinds are scarce now. I would not waste the CPS time on a messy house since as I type this, there are many children who are being abused and those cases ONLY need to utilize these resources. In a perfect world, every child would live in a clean home with mentally healthy parents. But this is reality and reality dictates that our economy is in the tank and whatever resources are still afloat should be used for priority cases only. If you call CPS over a messy house, then all the time/money/attention you take up just makes it harder for all the other more legitimate complaints where a child is actually being neglected or abused. I am speaking in realistic terms here...there are many children who should be taken away from their parents out there...and sadly some of them are not being looked after. It would be silly for CPS to make a house call on a messy house complaint when there are so many other deserving kids out there who are in much worse shape.

Rocket Scientist said...

OP, I truly hope that one of the suggestions given in the comments on this thread can help turn this situation around without involving CPS. If you try but just cannot help the situation on your own, I urge you to call CPS to ensure the safety of these children who are under your care. It is not an easy thing to do, but the right thing rarely is easy. If you find yourself hesitating, please do some research on your own: look up your state's mandated reporter laws and resources, talk to another nanny or childcare worker who has had to make a report, etc. You will feel better knowing you did everything in your power to help your charges grow up in a safe environment. Good luck!!

Carmen said...

I agree with Just my 2 cents that there are many children out there who are more deserving of the child protection services than those that live in a filthy home. I know some families where the parents leave their younger children alone with the older ones (who are like only 11 years old.) They order pizza tell the 11 year old to babysit while they go out. Sadly, these are the children that desperately need child protective services, and these are the children that deserve whatever resources exist out there. It is sad that some children have to live in a messy house, but priority should go to those that have more than a messy house to contend with.

Bostonnanny said...

http://www.ocfs.state.ny.us/main/cps/critical.asp

This NY state's website concerning Child abuse, maltreatment and mandated reporting.

Every state has one, and you can find the guidelines for calling CPS.

Every child has a right to good living conditions no matter what the economy is like. Yes their are children who need immediate attention but that doesn't mean others shouldn't receive it. CPS decides who needs the services not us. We are required by law as child care providers to call them if we suspect any maltreatment or abuse stated on their website.

Just My Two Cents Just Now said...

Thank you for the link Boston Nanny...I live in Laguna Beach, CA so I will check my the CA link.
Are you saying that if the OP does not report any of what she saw to CPS, then she is in effect breaking the law? And those that break the law may be prosecuted for it as we all know. Again, this is a very gray area and I highly doubt that the OP will EVER be accused by anyone of not following the laws of her state just because she decided to move on to another job in a cleaner environment.

Bostonnanny said...

just my two cents,

Stop dragging this on, you know I'm right. What I'm saying is every child who is being maltreated/abused by the terms defined in your state deserves a chance to live a happy a life. Either by CPS being their advocate, by providing their parent's with help or actually taking them away from a dangerous situation.

They will decide what needs to happen.

If a daycare let a child go home with a drunk parent and they got into an accident, then the daycare could be held liable by allowing it to happen and by not reporting it. They would lose their license.

Penalties—California Penal Code Section 11172[e]
A Mandated Reporter who fails to make a report of known or suspected child abuse:
Is guilty of a misdemeanor crime, which is punishable by up to:
six months in the county jail
and/or up to $1000 in fines
May lose their license or credential

http://www.pca-ca.org/cgi-bin/laws

Thats the website, educate yourself.

bostonnanny said...

Oh and I just pulled this from ISYN itself.

http://isawyournanny.blogspot.com/2006/10/mandated-reporters.html

http://www.helpguide.org/mental/child_abuse_physical_emotional_sexual_neglect.htm


Now I'm done.

ISYN said...

MANDATED REPORTERS

Just My Two Cents Just said...

ISYN...right on!!