CPS Season 1, Episodes 3 & 4 “Faheem Williams”

For episodes three and four of CPS podcast, we cover the first of two cases in New Jersey that changed the landscape of the state’s child protective services agency which ultimately changed it’s name from the Division of Youth & Family Services (DYFS) to the Division of Child Protection & Permanency (DCPP). The state agency only just got out from outside oversight in 2022 with the harrowing case of Faheem Williams and his brothers originated in 2003.

Faheem Williams was an adorable little boy whose life was taken too soon. His siblings survived the ordeal but still have a lived experience that no one should have to face. The case of the Williams’ children led to a lawsuit against the state agency charged with oversight of the children’s safety and has resulted in systematic change. Many workers and families that interact with DCP&P today will call it DYFS out of habit or spit out the term like a bad word when sharing frustrations with a system that is still far from perfect and has not protected all children under its care since.

In episode 3, we will explore Faheem’s story in depth and try to understand how a system intended to protect, did the opposite. In episode 4, we hope you will have had a chance to weigh in as we’ll discuss Faheem’s story from all the different angles and appreciate listener participation.