My Public Hearing Testimony About OCS

What so many people do not know about Behind the scenes from a child protective worker ..By Jessica ORourke

Jessica Veldstra

 Representative Tammie Wilson from North Pole held OCS Public Testimony Hearings at multiple locations around the state, after a grand jury declined to investigate and turned over their findings to the Citizen’s Review Panel and the Ombudsman’s Office. The hearings were opportunities for those “not satisfied with the current state of the Office of Children’s Services”.  Rep. Wilson has accused OCS of “legal kidnapping”.

As CPS workers, we are either accused of stepping on parents’ rights and kidnapping children who are perfectly safe or we don’t do nearly enough and leave children in grave danger in their homes. I decided to attend the hearing and below is what I said. I hoped it would be an encouragement to my fellow workers and a motivator to get the services that will actually help Alaska to be a safer state for children. Below is what I said:

My name is Jessica Veldstra…

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Laugh With Me

I love Peoples laughter and yours is amazing !! Let’s keep laughing through life !!

Jessica Veldstra

file000346276799A couple Sundays ago, I was out with a group of friends, when something unexpectedly and ridiculously hilarious occurred and we laughed until we cried. We spent the rest of the night laughing together and intermittently throughout the week, I still kept laughing whenever I thought about it. I felt somewhat self conscious about bursting out laughing while I was alone, or even laughing that hard when I was with friends and then it struck me, when did I stop laughing loud and even alone, subsequently making myself aware and self conscious about it now?
I have a loud, what I would consider obnoxious, laugh. In my dorm in college, my friends would listen down the long corridors for my laugh to find me. When I get together with my female relatives, who have similar laughs, the volume can be ear piercing. I hate hearing recordings of my laugh and try…

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On My One Year Blogging Anniversary

Great Blog on Feminism and shared housing and sooo much more!!!

Jessica Veldstra

I began this blog a year ago, the impetus being a year of reading Rachel Held Evans’ blog, an online debate that actually went pretty well, and my friend starting one. Over this last year I have learned that there is nothing like rising hits to make me question my punctuation choices, that disagreeing with my parents is terrifying and will put me in full on panic attack, that beginning sentences really do make a huge difference in catching people’s attention (Now It Get’s Personal),  my relatives are the most opinionated people I know and over the last year I am grateful to have gotten to know them much better, and everyone’s eighth grade picture is awkward it is a fabulous idea to put it out there on the internet where everyone can see it (This is What a Feminist Looks Like).

In all seriousness I have learned that people are far…

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Stop Treating Males Like Idiots

Jessica Veldstra

Our U.S culture has a habit of portraying males  as mindless, confused idiots who cannot be expected to know how to change a diaper, clean up a mess, not drool on a woman’s cleavage and couldn’t possibly have the self control to decline sex if it is offered to them.

But before we start pointing fingers at Homer Simpson, Family Guy, the Twitter defenders of the Steubenville rapists, and Huggies advertisements (all which deserve criticism) perhaps Christian culture should take a long hard look at itself.

I was raised in Christian culture.  Conservative Evangelical Christian culture. I was home-schooled until third grade and then enrolled in a tiny Christian school that was in the same building as my church. Between school, church, youth group, and extracurricular activities, I literally spent more hours in the church building than I did at home. I had a poster of Michael W. Smith on…

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