Child Protective Services in North Carolina using Blackmail to Illegally Seize Children from FamiliesAssociated Press reporters recently exposed a story of illegal practices by Child Protective Services social workers in one North Carolina county. Social workers in Cherokee County have been reportedly coercing parents and taking their children illegally, bypassing the court system by threatening to adopt out their children or throw the parents in jail if they refused to sign paperwork known in NC as a CVA - Custody and Visitation Agreement. The same paperwork is known in other states as a "safety plan" or other such name. Richard Wexler of the National Coalition for Child Protection Reform (NCCPR) has another name for it - blackmail. Wexler authored an article in response to the AP expose' entitled, "Child welfare, foster care and civil liberties: When CPS resorts to blackmail." Where the AP article leaves room to believe that the actions in Cherokee County are a problem of corruption unique to one area, Wexler's opening salvo leaves no room for that impression: "Reporters in North Carolina exposed the practice of child welfare agencies blackmailing families into giving up all their rights and letting them take away children with no court review at all. The only thing unusual about this is that, in North Carolina, it’s illegal. Elsewhere it’s standard operating procedure."