The Home School Court Report
No. 5

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Social Worker Investigates Spurious Allegations

Late one afternoon, a Home School Legal Defense Association member family was contacted by a social worker in response to numerous allegations from an anonymous tipster.* The family was shocked when they heard the allegations, which included: none of the children had been immunized; one of the children could not swallow independently and had to be force-fed; and the parents had been told that the child with the supposed medical condition needed an operation, but they had refused it.

When the family called HSLDA for help, Senior Counsel Christopher Klicka explained to the social worker that the family had no child with any medical troubles at all, much less trouble swallowing. Regarding the immunization allegations, Klicka stated that there is no requirement in Illinois that immunizations are mandatory when a family has religious convictions against them.

Nevertheless, the social worker continued to demand entrance into the home and request an interview with the children.

In a letter to the social worker, Klicka reiterated the fact that the allegations were bogus. He added that several reference letters were being sent to the social worker in the family’s defense and that the deputy sheriff would go through the family’s house and provide the social worker with a report on the condition of their living environment.

Klicka’s letter emphasized that the family was standing on their 4th Amendment right to not allow the social worker entry into their home or an interview with their children. Since it was obvious that the children were well adjusted and healthy when the social worker saw them on her first visit, there was absolutely no need for an interview.

This ample proof of the family’s innocence, as well as the fact that the tip was made by a relative out of spite, convinced the social worker to leave the family alone.

— by Christopher J. Klicka

* See "HSLDA social services contact policy."