By Jessica Turner
I would like to know what exactly Are the values of our City? Our State?
We have so many things going on. One minute we’re fighting for housing, the next we’re fighting for immigrant rights in a sanctuary city. Now we are fighting for keeping families together. And I’m sure everyone has seen all the posts and news coverage of the new political subject of keeping families together and fighting against the Trump administration’s inhumane orders to separate children from their families when they are detained for crossing an invisible border without permission.
Over the past few weeks I have read many articles about how it is a violation of civil rights to separate children from their parents in any scenario let alone without any cause.
Because so many of our elected officials (especially the Mayor) have taken the opportunity to speak out against such action I felt compelled to write you today to let you know about my story and what I am dealing with currently.
In April I had a medical emergency which caused me to be transported by ambulance to Somerville hospital. The Hospital did not do any testing on me to try to find out the cause for the medical condition I was experiencing. I fainted inside of my home and fell on the Floor. When I fell I also had hit my head off of the table and all I can remember before trying to get up and walk to my daughter’s bedroom to hand her the phone which already had 911 dialed. I hadn’t eaten anything that day and when night time came I felt dizzy and light headed. I have never used drugs or alcohol besides the rare occasion where I will have a drink socially. The last time being around January.
I remember my entire body shaking like I was having a seizure. it was so scary I thought that I was going to die. I handed my oldest daughter my cell phone with the number already dialed for help and warned her that I felt like I was going to fall. I somehow managed to make my way to my kitchen for a few seconds and finally to the living room where I remember waking up – my daughter still on the phone with 911.
When I woke up I could hear her on the phone with the dispatcher and I told her to give me the phone because I could tell she was frustrated at the dispatcher because she was not getting any help. I often find myself in any situation where if I have to have the police involved down here at Clarendon, I’m having to call 911 and declare I’ve done nothing wrong before I explain to them what had happened. This time was no different. I got on the phone with the dispatcher and declared I had not used any drugs or, alcohol and I was scared and didn’t know what to do.
It’s amazing how many times I had to tell the dispatcher that I did not consume any drugs or alcohol because I was afraid that somehow the police would turn it around on me and make it look like I did when I didn’t and I never have. It happened with one Housing Police officer person before, which I recorded and put on YouTube. He also wrote a letter of report to the Executive Director lying in full lies and detail saying that I was violent and making threats towards him but my video recording proves otherwise. It’s still up on YouTube and I will never take it down. If there is one thing I hate, it is liars.
I asked my daughter to call the neighbour so that someone would watch her and her brother and sister while I was at the hospital, which she did.
I spent about an hour in the hospital sitting in a hospital bed on a rainy and cold night in just a tank top and pajama pants. Doctors did no tests on me besides a 15 second EKG. No other tests were taken – no blood was drawn, no Cat scan was done, no physical check or anything not even my head where I had hit it off of the table. I was there for about an hour and then they let me go home with no answers.
When I got home I read my discharge papers which stated I had been admitted to the emergency room for drug abuse, the drug being marijuana. I have my marijuana license active and informed the EMT’s that responded and the housing police officer who responded I had not smoked any more than a tiny hit of a joint that night. Not even close to enough to have any effect on me.
As someone who does have the right to use medical marijuana and as someone who lives in a state where marijuana is Legal, I didn’t think that this would do anything negative or have any effect on how I was being treated not only in the hospital but the comments made on the report supposedly taken.
AroAround one o’clock in the morning after returning from the hospital and getting my children from the neighbor’s house I received a phone call from a woman claiming to be from the department of children and families telling me that she was outside of my house and needed to come in to check on my children and make sure that they were OK. I asked her why she would need to do this because the officer is the one who left my children with the neighbor while I was being put into the ambulance and I didn’t understand why there would have been a 51A filed against me because no neglect or child abuse had occurred nor has it ever occurred.
The women demanded that I let them into my apartment even though I declared it was one o’clock in the morning and they had no right to be knocking on my door. I informed them that I had just been released from the hospital, that I didn’t know what happened to me still but in any case it was a violation of my rights to demand entry into my unit at such an hour at night and without any just cause.
The department of children and families is nothing new to me. A resident has called on me consistently as well back when I was in opposition to the Clarendon redevelopment. They were also called on me for a different occasion in October and that claim was filed by the same officer that had made this one is well. Eventually I called the Somerville police department and asked them to come to my house because there were 2 women at my door unable to produce any type of identification of who they were demanding to see my children.
After calling 911 again, Somerville police department officers showed up and I tried to explain to them that these women were demanding that I let them in my house to see my children even though the incident did not involve my children being neglected or abused in any way shape or form and I had not received any notice of anything. The officers did not answer me until the sergeant showed up on scene as well and I let him in my unit. I asked him as well why are these ladies at my door demanding that I let them into my house without a warrant or any justified cause simply because somebody made a lying report saying that I had neglected or abused my children which I had not, never have, and never will.
The sergeant told me it ‘s best if I cooperate with these women and let them into my home. I told the officers that my rights were being violated and I have read the department of children and families regulations which States that notice must be given an advanced time of 24 hours at least to schedule on appointment unless it is an emergency which would mean the kids are in immediate danger – which they weren’t.
The officers disregarded what I was telling them and still encouraged me to let the women in my home to which I finally agreed to. They came inside checked on the children, tried to interrogate my son which I stopped them from doing, tried to explore my children’s rooms and then asked me many questions of which was: what my doctors names were, what my children’s doctors names are, what their teachers names are, what school they attend and what my license number is.
All this was allowed even though the police officers were standing directly next to me. When they were finished harassing me they handed me a piece of paper not addressed to me and does not have my name on it saying it was alleged that I neglect my children.
That night was the last time that I had heard from them until May, when a social worker contacted me to tell me that she needed to schedule a visit with me to see my children once again. I refused to meet with her because I still to this day have not done anything wrong. She also happened to call me on the same day that the real estate transfer fee hearings as well as the city budget meetings were happening. As a matter of fact she only called me on the days that these public meetings were happening which could just be a coincidence but anyone who is from Somerville knows nothing in the city is coincidence especially when it comes to threats and harassment.
She left me alone for about another month up until just last week when she began to harass me again with phone calls threatening me telling me that If I did not comply with her request to meet and see my children that she would come and take them from my custody. I informed her that I had not done anything wrong and there was no cause for them to even open a case against me let along continue their harassment of me and my children. Still, she insisted making threats over the phone and then calling me back to leave a much nicer voicemail. I never received a letter from her up until today. I never received anything stating the appeal process of whatever claims were filed either, but still she persists in violating my rights and getting away with it.
Today she called me again and left another voicemail telling me that she intends to call the school (which she did by the way) to check on the kid’s attendance and their academic performance all without my consent and still without any cause. After this she informed me that she would send police officers if I did not respond to her within the hour that she was calling and told me that they would do a wellness check.
Later in the evening I got a knock on the door of which 3 officers showed up to where from housing and one was a Somerville police department police Officer. They told me that I had to let them in to see my children, and I did. They checked the children, saw that they were fine and then told me that they had to look in my refrigerator to make sure that they had food to eat. We don’t have much because I just returned from a trip to Washington DC today but I let them know that we would be ordering food. They told me that if I didn’t cooperate with DCF that they intend to gain custody of my children and take them out of my care. Then they left.
I checked my mailbox today afterwards, as I haven’t been home since Friday, to find a letter from the social worker who wrote in the letter the following see for yourself:
What I find the most amazing about this great city of Somerville is the amount of corrupt officials and politicians who talk out of both sides of their mouToday I had the honor to witness this 1st hand when our very own Mayor posted about Donald Trump and immorally separating children from their families at the border – while I stood reading a letter telling me that the department of children and families intends to do just that exact thing except I’m not breaking any laws and I have not broken any laws.
What I find the most fascinating about the entire thing is how quickly the people who claim to be supportive of human rights and people will advocate for children and families but these same people who I notified on several occasions about the situation that I am going through have not said a word and are allowing my children to be removed from my custody.
The worst part is I live in their city and I’m an American citizen my parents are American citizens not that that should or would give me any privilege but I find it interesting that they will speak up for people and their children who they don’t even know, 1000 miles away at a border who are breaking the law (whether the law is unjust or not, unfair or not, it is a law) but the same people remain silent when I ask for their help and inform them and seek their support for my own children and my own self who knows them well.
It’s a sad day for me when my children are going to be taken away from me simply because I’ve done nothing wrong but spoken the truth and advocated for fairness, equality, human rights, housing, real estate transfer fees, affordable housing crisis, of course the Clarendon redevelopment, and people who like to talk shit about the Mayor and our other elected officials.
Where were they? Where are they when I need them? God forbid they reply to something that I write. Your true colors are showing my friends, and I cannot remain silent much longer about these threats and harassment. It hurts me too much as well as my kids. These hypocrites are terrorising us.
Clarendon Residents United