According to a report by The Associated Press, the Cherokee Department of Social Services has been systematically and illegally removing children from their homes for years. The actions may have started more than a decade ago and affect at least 100 families.
Parents in the poverty and drug-stricken county were pressured into signing custody and visitation agreements which effectively gave away care of their children. In some instances, parents did not fully understanding what they were agreeing to. Since the story broke, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services has stepped in and temporarily assumed control of the local DSS.