My late father was a Libertarian. While I do not agree with much of the Libertarian agenda, I have come to agree strongly with his Libertarian paranoia about government agencies.
Your county human services department does not care about helping you. In fact, the likelihood is that your social worker has been trained to try and trip you up so they can deny you services or worse, fine you and perhaps incarcerate you.
The websites for social services are not straightforward.
Unless you are completely destitute and have absolutely no assets whatsoever, do everything in your power to avoid social services. They will come after your assets.
If you are absolutely destitute and have no other recourse, this is the only time it is safe to seek assistance from social services.
Go to food banks rather than trying to get food stamps if at all possible. Foodbank employees may be underpaid dicks who will make you feel like a shitty human being for coming to the food bank, but they are nothing compared to what the SS (that's Social Services) Gestapo are capable of.
If you need Medicaid, it tends to operate differently than other human services. Also, Medicaid differs state by state. I can only speak for the Colorado Medicaid program. There may be some similarities in your state, but you would be best advised to check for yourself.
Overall, at this time, Colorado Medicaid is fairly straightforward and, despite its problems, has been pretty fair in its treatment of me and my family.
I very much need Medicaid. I have numerous health problems and can't work a steady job.
I believe that everyone should receive Medicaid, regardless of income, and high-priced insurance should be abolished. But this post deals with current reality.
I am also not opposed to social services in principle. In principle, I believe that every person should be entitled to adequate housing and food, regardless of their ability to work. This is not a pro-social-Darwinism rant. This is a criticism of the current state of social services and why I have come to agree with my father that agencies such as social services should not be trusted and should be avoided as much as possible.
I have cognitive and psychological disabilities as well as physical ones. I have ADD, and I tend to be scatterbrained because of it. My family is in the process of moving, and I wanted to get a jump on things instead of forgetting to do them like I often do and then three months later remembering that, oh shit, I forgot to change our address with Colorado Peak. Thus, technically, at this point, my son and I have two addresses.
My son is high-functioning autistic and has ADHD. He does not do well with filling out forms such as the Colorado Peak form and tends to become overwhelmed by them. Thus, even though I am not much better, I assume responsibility for doing this.
I have felt bad because I quit my job delivering food at the end of May so I could concentrate on helping my son's dad purchase a property about 130 miles from where my son and I currently live. My son and I, and eventually his dad, will be living in this property. It is in my son's dad's name. He lives in another state, and my son has been acting as his agent in the purchase of this property and all necessary work to be done on it.
As far as employment goes, I have been freelancing online, but the outcome doesn't add up too much. Feeling guilty about being a drain on the household, I decided I could help out by applying for food stamps in the county we are moving to.
Medicaid allows you to declare every adult in a home to be a "separate household." My son and I are separate households, even though we both live under the same roof.
I did not know until today that human services, which comprises food benefits and disability, does not. Everyone in the household must be declared.
I was naively under the impression that the caseworker wanted to help me, so I gave her my son's information when she asked for it. I should, at that point, have apologized for wasting her time and said that I only wanted to apply for benefits for myself and would have to talk things over with my son. But I stupidly revealed our situation to her.
She proceeded to have me sign a form saying that I was withdrawing my request for benefits, told me that she was sending the case back to the county where the townhome we are moving from is and that if the county decides to audit us, we will be facing 10 years in jail and a $250,000 fine. I told her that my son has nothing to do with this, it is all on me, I was only trying to help the household as I feel I have been a burden. She told me that because he is part of the same household, he is culpable too and we could both be found guilty of fraud.
These agencies will be more than happy to send innocent people to jail for misunderstanding how a fucked-up system works. The fact is, neither my son nor I would survive prison, and this move is our last hope. If things do not work out for us here, our only other options become homelessness or suicide.
This is why I, a democratic socialist, agree with my late Libertarian father regarding government agencies.
Do not trust them damn crooked vultures.
They will fuck you from the left, from the right, upside down, and sideways, and they will feel no remorse about destroying your life.
My father also did not trust mental health agencies and people such as psychologists and psychiatrists, who, very often, are as fucked up or more so than the people they are supposed to treat.
I wish I had listened to you, Dad. Because right now I'm afraid I've fucked everything up by trying to do the right thing.
Please listen to my dad. There were a lot of things I disagreed with the old man on, but I agree wholeheartedly with him on this one. Don't trust government agencies. They do not have your best interests at heart by any stretch of the imagination.
~Sly Has Spoken~