The Davis family is a blended family. Shakeeka (Black American) has been a single mother of Isaiah (multi-racial) and Sheera (multi-racial) until last year. Their father Brent (Native American) is in prison for armed robbery and hasnt been a part of their lives.
The Davis family is a blended family. Shakeeka (Black American) has been a single mother of Isaiah (multi-racial) and Sheera (multi-racial) until last year. Their father Brent (Native American) is in prison for armed robbery and hasnt been a part of their lives. Ben (Black/Asian) has been divorced for the last 8 years from Tonya (Native American). Ben and Tonya have five children of which three remain at home with Tonya: Esther age 17 Emmett aged 15 and Portia aged 13. All children are multi-racial.
Shakeeka and Ben married last year but continue to live separately most of the time in different cities. Shakeeka continues to live with her blind mother and two children in her mothers small three bedroom home while Ben lives alone in a small apartment two hours away in another state. The couple sees each other every weekend most holidays and during the summers. Shakeeka works as a middle school math teacher and basketball coach with 18 years in the public school system. She wants to wait to retire in 2 years before she even considers moving. Additionally she provides all transportation for daily necessities for her mother Doris (Black) who is homebound related to her blindness and agoraphobia. Doris can be depended upon to care for the children at home cooking and housekeeping but has great difficulty leaving home for any reason.
Ben has worked part-time as a UPS truck driver for the past 5 years after being laid off from Chrysler as a mechanic. He was unemployed for 3 years before obtaining this part-time position. He has repeatedly requested a full-time position which has not occurred. He is afraid to leave this job as it was so difficult to obtain one after his lay-off. Due to his economic hardship Bens court-ordered child support is $400/month which is currently doubled for the next 2 years in order to cover all previously missed payments when he was unemployed. His annual base income is $30000 but he attempts to work as many extra shifts during the week as possible.
Shakeeka has always lived with her mother. Her father Elmer (Black) died from a massive heart attack when Shakeeka was 17 years old. Doris became blind from glaucoma when Shakeeka was 11 years old. From the time of Elmers death until Shakeeka began to earn a living Doris and Shakeeka lived on Doris disability income and food stamps. Shakeeka went to college on scholarships and student loans which she continues to pay monthly. Shakeeka has a Masters degree in education. She earns $40000 annually. The school where she works is in a poor section of the city and has a significant amount of violence. Theft is a constant threat but recently the violence has escalated with a stabbing in the locker room after a basketball game and more recently a hostage situation where three students and a teacher were killed by another student just last week. This is very frightening as both Shakeeka and now Isaiah in 6th grade are at the school each weekday. Shakeeka was the first person on the scene and discovered the stabbing incident. Fortunately the student survived but does not know who attacked him as they were disguised.
Since the violent incidents at school Shekeeka has become very anxious having difficulty sleeping and has a poor appetite. Isaiah has become withdrawn reports a stomach ache each morning before school and is moody. Before the violent episodes at school Isaiah had begun shoplifting with his friends. Now he has been approached to join a gang having had his family threatened with a drive-by shooting if he refuses. Isaiah is afraid to tell anyone of the threats and doesnt know who to talk to.
Sheera is a very sensitive child picking up on the distress that she notices in her mother and brother. As a result she has been having nightmares and doesnt want to go to school either. Her asthma has exacerbated after a recent head cold necessitating nebulizer treatments.
When Shakeeka phoned Ben to talk to him about her fears and concerns Ben pre-empted the conversation by telling her that his youngest daughter was pregnant and wouldnt identify the father.
PART 1 (4 pages)
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