July 31, 2001

Colorado: Hostile Investigation Dropped After HSLDA Intervenes

Mrs. S was shocked when a sheriff and two social workers from the Department of Human Services (DHS) came to her house and demanded an interview based on allegations that she was a "recluse" and had not left her house in three years.

A widow who is raising her two autistic children on her own, this home schooling mother lives in a remote area, and in caring for the needs of her children, she is not able to leave the house very often.

Mrs. S wisely indicated that she could not let the social workers in her house, and stated she would have to call her attorney. The sheriff responded, "If you close the door, I will break it down." He also stated that if she did not cooperate, "Things will get nasty."

Fearing these threatening statements, Mrs. S acquiesced after a 20-minute standoff and let the sheriff and social workers in her home. They interviewed her and looked around the house. When they left, they indicated that they would contact her in the near future.

Mrs. S contacted HSLDA. We immediately called the social worker and explained that Mrs. S was doing nothing illegal in home schooling and caring for her children. We requested that the investigation be dropped at once.

The social worker acknowledged that there was no reason to think abuse was taking place. She also admitted that she could not defend the manner in which the interview was conducted, and she indicated that the investigation was unfounded.

This matter has been resolved to the satisfaction of all parties involved. HSLDA members are encouraged to contact HSLDA's legal staff immediately if a social worker or police officer demands entry into your home.

 Other Resources

HSLDA's CPS Policy Statement