Monday, May 31, 2010

COMPELLING REASONS TO BE FAIR / Part 205 / For Love and For Justice / Zabeth and Paul Bayne/

Without question this is a complex case. There are so many strands of information. So many factors to consider. So difficult to be impartial when you have an understandable bias for the social worker or for the Bayne parents. So many compelling reasons to be receptive to interaction of viewpoints. So many reasons to be fair.

The Baynes were not served notice about the Temporary Care Order application prior to arriving in court back in 2007 for a presentation hearing. Let's just say they were uninformed and uninitiated. There in the court room they were informed of the MCFD intention to keep the children in care under a TCO. This application was achieved without the Baynes' involvement or possibility of contesting the presentation. Further, MCFD did not follow protocol thereafter and renew the TCO every three months. It is possible that this was done surreptitiously and if so, disclosure has never been made. The likelihood is that the proper steps were not taken. When, after two years, MCFD notified the Baynes at a scheduled meeting, that MCFD was now seeking a Continuing Care Order, the Baynes pointed out the failure to follow due process with regard to the TCO and that the Baynes' rights had been violated, this was unanswered and ignored as though unimportant. The MCFD's claim was that the CCO was the decision of choice now because the children had been in care for so long already. This meeting was recorded by an invited observer. (While good social work goes on at the front line, it is this type of self-serving and patent wrongheadedness with respect to its own governing rules that has marked the management decisions throughout the Bayne ordeal.)

It can be argued from evidence presented in court that Dr. Colbourne, the specialist of the original SBS diagnosis of the Bayne child was initially, not 100% certain but that she believed this was a shaken baby. It can also be argued that she altered her diagnostic opinion in the summer of 2008, at least she added 'impact' as causative. Why she made this adjustment is unknown but she may have concluded that her 'baby shaking' opinion was deficient as a stand alone cause. Besides, the National Center for Shaken Baby on who Board of Directors she sat for some time had in the years of this case added 'impact' as a causal link to shaking. By May 2008 she had received three of the Baynes' experts' reports which pointed to 'impact. ' Those experts were Dr. Gardner, Dr. Galaznik and Dr. Innis. Since the MCFD case for either TCO or CCO rested chiefly on that diagnosis, this diagnostic shift was discussed in John Fitzimmon's correspondence to lawyer Finn Jensen in which because Dr. Colbourne's examination may have missed the child's skull fracture, the question was posed about Dr. Colbourne's credibility in court.

Nine days after the removal on Oct 31, 2007 the MCFD told the Baynes that it had already concluded that a second medical opinion would not be sought. It had concluded its investigations. Dr. Cochrane the neurosurgeon and Dr. Poskitt were two of the original doctors drawn into the case near the start but both declined to testify for the MCFD, Dr. Cochrane excusing himself early.

At the presentation hearing in December of 2007 Zabeth Bayne recounted the only plausible explanation for her youngest child's injuries that she and Paul could consider, injuries that warranted taking her to several hospitals for a diagnosis and for treatment. That in court submission concerned the accident of one child falling on the smallest. She posited this without opportunity for disclosure of the medical reports, or opportunity for second opinions. To date, at no time has a judge heard the evidence of the experts who disagree with the SBS diagnosis. That will come as the case concludes August 9-13, 2010. However, with that disadvantage in 2007 and because the Judge was waiting for RCMP investigation results, the Judge ruled, granting an Interim Order. Subsequently, RCMP dropped the charges against the Baynes and the file was discarded for lack of evidence to proceed.

The fact that Colbourne added the 'impact' factor is a critical one for MCFD, because if substantive evidence for 'shaking' by either one of these parents is already lacking in this case, and it is, it is an unsupportable leap to suggest an impact to the child other than the one the Baynes themselves reported at the very beginning – one of their active children fell on the youngest infant while she lay on the floor in the care of her parents, who like any other parents were multi-tasking while monitoring their new daughter. Why, when only weeks old was she placed on the floor when two small boys were playing in the house? Reasonable question. A reasonable response is that it has never been uncommon for an infant to be placed on a blanket on the floor where it is assumed she will be safe even in a home with other children. Would these parents repeat this? - probably not. But this was not neglect or abuse.


  1. I really believe that the bayne couple haven't been telling the true story to their supporters. My questions are #1,why this PERFECT and LOVING parent even put their "DEAR" girl on the ground(less than the size of your forearm)knowing that one of their boys can't run too well, and when was you last time put any thing that is breakable on the ground? #2,I am not convinced that letting one of your slower kid take on all the faults of damaging his little sister is the way to make the parents innocent. #3, why a PERFECT and LOVING husband sit at home letting his wife do all the works fighting to get their kids back(he looks healthy and speaks well)etc...

  2. To ANON above and others,
    As a comment attached to a post entitled, 'compelling reasons to be fair,' there is a evident unfairness in this expressed viewpoint. This actually sounds like a comment from someone closer to the case than a casual observer or reader. This sounds like a comment from someone with vested interest in the outcome. To be so convinced that Paul and Zabeth have not been telling the truth sounds like a comment of someone connected to the MCFD documentation and position. Capitalizing words like PERFECT, LOVING AND DEAR successfully underscored the writer's sarcasm and disdain and thereby supports the essence of my blog post. Caustic reference to blame placing on a child and to Paul's role in their shared efforts to recover the child are not new insinuations but they typify the unkind opinions of just a few people who like this writer do it from the relatively secure but cowardly concealment of ANONYMITY.

  3. Anon is typical Canadian honorless cowardly liar, public servant automatically blaming victims for anything and everything possible and impossible to coverup cruel and inhuman results of own, or her colleagues' wrongdoings. I closely watch and fight them, for twelve and half years and counting. GOOD LUCK TO ALL WITH CLEAR CONSCIENCE!!!

  4. Good Job Ron,...I believe anonymous should own up and give a name.


  5. Ron;I just want to correct something you seem to have misunderstood. The ministry made no procedural error in keeping the children in care so long. They are not in care under a temporary order. They are in care under an interim custody order. A temporary care order is an order made after a hearing in which the evidence can be tested under due process of examination and cross-examination. Such orders can only be made for three months and must then be reiviewed. For children younger than five,temporary orders may not exceed one year. Then the child must be returned or a continuing care order made. However, an interim custody order is meant to be a very temporary device to give the director control of the children until a hearing can be started and this must be within 45 days. Unfortunately, this provides a legal loophole, which is cynically exploited by the director. As long as a hearing is started within 45 days, there is no limit on how long it can last. A hearing can be repeatedly adjourned on almost any pretext. Another dodge is to call so many witnesses that many days are required and-as in the Bayne case---there was not enough time for over a year. This is one of the serious flaws in the act. This is one of the reasons why the act is part of the problem. I will write more on this at another time. Yes, the person who criticized the Baynes for putting the baby on the floor is quite right.She put the baby on the rug for a moment while she went to get a diaper or something. The baby's brother ran into the room and fell on her. This act of momentary thoughtlessness, is something the mother will regret for the rest of her life. I do not think that anyone needs to rub it in.

  6. Ray, I appreciate your correction.
    Your explanation is beneficial and necessary.

  7. Attn J.F., I withheld your comment today. You may be able to deduce why. A slight modification will help.

  8. Sure, anonymous BS preferable to signed personal experience, this is Canada! GOOD LUCK TO ALL WITH CLEAR CONSCIENCE!!!

  9. 1 of 2

    The case is not complex at all. It is not "fair" by any stretch of the imagination. This word "fair" is just not in the MCFD vocabulary and does not appear in the CFCSA either. It has been deliberatly made to look complex by MCFD in order to justify the lengthy retention and overblown trial.

    A child bumped her head, and/or was shaken, and there is just one record of this occurence. There is no "pattern" or other supporting collateral information that supports the MCFD suspicion.

    The Hoffmans were in close proximity to the Baynes and noted appropriate levels of discipline applied to the older siblings only throughout their many months of friendship leading up to the accident Bethany experienced.

    In my search to compare my case with others, my encounteres with seven social workers involved in my case, it is my opinion that Annonymous 1:00 AM uses the logic that the ideal MCFD social worker employee typically exhibits in any matter where children are removed. That is, that parents should be considered guilty first in order to justify removals and lengthy retentions "just as a precaution."

    After all, this logic keeps them employed for another year (or three) for each child removed. It is a very simple equation: remove kids = keep job.

    I have some questions for Anonymous 1:00 AM who appears to have inside information and strong opinion on the guilt of the Baynes:

    It would appear to me that RCMP charge attempts should have occurred before a presentation hearing started -- why the multi-week delay?

    Why did the Hoffmans, after a year or so of friendship with the Baynes, file a protection concern that listed only observationst the boys were thin, but only AFTER the Baynes had already taken Bethany to the hospital several times?

    Why, only AFTER the presentation hearing would the Hoffmans submit concerns of Munchausen's syndrom to the RCMP?

    Why did the ministry not include in any of their evidence the concern of munchausesn't syndrome and also did not even bring this up any of this information in trial in direct questioning of their witness, the Hoffmans. Why did this information only come to light when the Baynes confronted the witness with the police report that MCFD neglected to use as relevant evidence?


    The details presented in today's blog are illuminating indeed. It would be relevant to publish in a fixed location, the exact timeline to give those of us not intimitely associated with the case a reference that would improve comprehension.

    This blog likely has this detail sprinkled throughout several issues, but it is not easy to search and read through.

    I suggest this, because there are parallels in my case that is long over, but brings up matters that I would not have thought to ask questions on, and could have served to greatly shorten my children's stay in care.

    I'm sure with many other parents with live cases, a light bulb may go off and serve as a basis for further exploration and means for anyone currently undergoing a removal experience to pursue remedy to shorten their children's stay in care.

    If the temporary care order issued at the Presentation Hearing did have to be renewed, the fact the RCMP dropped charges would be very relevant and would be the basis for not renewing the interim custody, on the basis the prima facia case to keep the kids in care no longer existed.

    If fact, I would insist that parents request MCFD bring their concerns to the police for criminal investigation. When no cause or basis for such concerns exist, the results of the investigation should be brought in as evidence at a Presentation Hearing to destroy MCFD's prima facia case and the 'difference of evidence' theory that falls in favour of the Director. In these cases, MCFD should get no more than a supervision order and the kids should be returned.

  10. 2 of 2

    As you will recall, at the Access hearing some weeks ago, Finn clarified the CFCSA in this way: Once a TCO is issued, no renewals are required until a protection hearing occurs.

    The legislature never intended for such a deplorable situation of years elapsing before a protection hearing occurs. But, it appears to me that this loophole was a relatively recent revision, as of 2004 (page 715 of the Annotated Family Pracitce 2008-2009 page 715, by the Continuing Legal Education of BC - a $150 book that can be purchased downtown Vancouver).

    As printed:
    45(2) In this section "initial order" means a temporary custody order made under section 41(1)(b) or (c) or 42.2(4)(b) or (c). [am. 1997-46-19, efective June 1, 1998 (B.C. Reg. 172/98): 2004-60-64, effective January 16, 2006 (B.C. Reg. 350/05)]

    If this legislation is repealed, it would force child protection to apply to renew temporary custody every three months. The Baynes would have been able to use RCMP's refusal to file charges and the good supervision reports, and lack of no new evidence as justification to permit the judge to deny the renewal.

    This is something I remain confused about, why does MCFD even bother to serve a 3-month interim custody extension application immediately after a presentation hearing, when they know they do not have to do this until after a protection hearing declares protection is required and interim custody is granted. Why not file a CCO, or supervision order, or a 6-month application first based on the evidence they posess? Is it to buy more time to manufacture additional evidence to ensure a win at a protection hearing?

    In my mind, the only purpose in MCFD serving an application for temporary custody at such an early stage is to try to convince the parents to consent, using false logic that they would avoid a hearing on the matter that they would lose anyway.

    This renewal application before a protection hearing occurs is completely pointless otherwise. If a parent consents, it is essentially an admission of guilt, which greases the wheels for a future extension.

    It goes something like this: "Judge, concerns for the parent still exists and more time is needed to address this issue. As the parent already consented to a a 3-month extension, we ask for just 6-more months by which we anticipate the children could be returned within this time."

    In the Bayens case, MCFD contends a "full hearing of evidence" is required. If this logic is true, then every single child protection removal would need to undergo a multi-week trial.

    The RCMP approach and decision is publicly palatable, the MCFD approach and lack of decision is not.

    Make no mistake, this joke of a trial at enormous expense that would pay for a Harvard education for each of the Baynes children is intended solely for public consumption, to serve as a warning to anyone else considering going public and who refused to consent to any TCO or CCO applications by MCFD.

    The intent of the CFCSA law would appear to be that a protection hearing occurs within 45 days, which means that a 3-month renewal of custody is never required.

    MCFD is screwing parents by deliberately overcomplicating cases, refusing to even apply for trial dates, and making it seem like the judiciary is at fault for not being able to provide protection hearing trial dates within this 45-day period.

    As Ray Ferris pointed out in an earlier comment, judicial case conferences are pointless waste ot time exercises that serve only to delay the onset of a protection hearing. The date of such a conference is referred to as a "protection hearing" to make it appear as if the 45-day time limit is being respected. NOT!

    I should mention that Ray's book, the "Art of Child Protection" was instrumental in my understanding of what social workers "should" be doing, and this understanding helped me secure a complete withdrawal of the MCFD in my case, resulting in the unconditional return of my children.

  11. Well Josef F, I gave you what you wanted. I published your original and then your retort to me when I initially held it back. The latter note was unnecessary just like the first few words of the first note. I was trying to spare you.

  12. Thank you, Mr.Unruh. My statements are based on FACTS & DIRECT EVIDENCE of grossly illegal conduct of liars and their accomplices who ruined the health and life of my child under the pretence of providing "services" so similar in countless cases. The internet is saturated with similar true stories, yet nobody gives a damn. Thus I am very grateful, and thank you for steadily exposing FACTS & DIRECT EVIDENCE about cruel abuse of Bayne's family. GOOD LUCK!!!!

  13. Just curious Ron - I've noticed your frustration at "Anonymous" signatures, only when there are comments made that question the Baynes' innocence. There appear to be many "Anonymous" people commenting, both for and against either side. I suggest that the implication that one side is cowardly because they don't "expose" themselves may be a little unfair.

  14. Anon 6:42 PM, "I hear you."

  15. Anon said (in Part 2 above, May 31, 2010 11:29 AM)

    "MCFD is screwing parents by deliberately overcomplicating cases, refusing to even apply for trial dates, and making it seem like the judiciary is at fault for not being able to provide protection hearing trial dates within this 45-day period."

    I agree.

    What also should be noted is that hindsight with respect to accidents is conveniently 50/50, but how many of us when we were growing up - with perfectly good, loving, competent parents - had some kind of accident that could have also been blamed on our parents?

    The only way to ensure that children never get a scrape, bruise, or injury of any kind is to keep them locked up in a padded cell - which of course would be child abuse.

    Parents all over the world experience great fear whenever they take their children to an emergency room because they know that they are always looked upon suspiciously. All it takes is ONE person in the system to make their life - and the life of their child/ren - a living hell. And that is exactly what happened in the Bayne's case. Think back to when you were a child, all the dangerous things you did, with or without your parents' knowledge. If parents are going to be blamed each and every time their child is injured then we might just as well give every single child to the state as soon as he or she is born. Which appears to be close to what some people - here and elsewhere - want.

    And as for the nasty, snide, sarcastic comments above (Anonymous: May 31, 2010 1:00 AM) re: the Baynes. Keep them coming, I say; it only proves what kind of vicious mentality is behind all this.

  16. And to Anonymous at May 31, 2010 6:42 PM:

    Ron is perfectly justified in being frustrated (and perhaps more than frustrated) when an anonymous person makes highly defamatory comments regarding the Baynes, comments that Ron knows to be false. The other Anonymous comments that Ron is not frustrated about - but which Anon at May 31, 2010 6:42 PM thinks he rightly should be frustrated about - are not of the same nature.

    To claim that Ron is solely criticizing the comments of people who are anti-Bayne is untrue; I can say this because he has chastised me on a few occasions for the tone or style of my comments, and I am 100% for the Baynes having their children returned.

  17. Anon 1:00am, your comments were extremely uncouth. Agree or disagree with the removal, snide comments achieve nothing.

    Josef, I had three posts to catch-up on. You made one comment about how CPS has destroyed your family. I am so dearly sorry such a thing happened to you (and to others). I urge you to recognize this doesn't occur in all cases, and has been a significant minority in the history of CPS - a system which very much does possess some extremely intelligent, empathetic, and caring folks.

  18. I lawyer I contacted stated the total time in care was relevant regardless of the delay in the onset of a protection hearing.

    If I recall correctly, the application by the Ministry for the continuing custody order was after the 1-year maximum time in care period.

  19. Defending, attacking, pounding on the table do not solve the problem. After hearing so many problems and arguments from both sides, what solution(s) should we seek?


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