The court case proper has not been concluded, yet the Judge permitted this attendant item to be presented and ruled upon independent of the final case outcome.
More time with their children.
Time without supervisors hovering, watching, taking notes.
Founded on the premise of the best interests of the children, yesterday, Tuesday June 8th, Paul and Zabeth laid out facts to the Court to support their request for more visitation time and unsupervised visits. Their lawyer Doug Christie presented their concisely written affidavit and refutation of the Ministry affidavit.
Yesterday Judge Crabtree listened and spoke. I want you to understand what he heard and saw in that court room. He saw an in demand Victoria based lawyer supportive of a young couple without financial assets to pay him, make the trip from the Island to be in court to represent them on this supplemental matter. In that act he observed the commitment of a legal counsel who is convinced that the Ministry has done a disservice to this family which needs to be rectified. Judge Crabtree also saw five salaried Ministry employees (paid for by you) in attendance in court, sitting on their hands. He discerned how nervous the Ministry is about the publicity and the outcomes of this entire case, of which this present application is an indicator. Five people present was not a strategic sign of solidarity. It was imprudent.
Judge Crabtree listened as in their presentation the Baynes stated that they dearly love their children and they long to have their children in their parental care once again. They stated that they have demonstrated this by attending every visitation opportunity permitted to them for two and one half years and have frequently requested that the Director grant more time to them. Any visitation is at the discretion of the Director. All visitation has been strictly supervised . Gestures and words by children or parents being monitored and recorded. When anything deviated from the stringent guidelines prescribed to them, the supervisor remonstrated the parents even using threats of cancelled visitation privilege. Such demanding and restricted scrutiny inhibited natural loving parental/child interaction. The best interests of these children has not been the motivation behind this rigorous supervision.
This is merely the beginning of this recounting of the affidavit adventure. Expect another episode later today.
Yesterday's Conclusion: At the end of the day, Judge Crabtree ordered access consistent with the request of Paul and Zabeth that the children attend a Birthday Party for one of the children to be held soon at a place of their choice and supervision was at the discretion of the Ministry. The children would also be permitted to attend an anniversary party at another date. Most importantly Justice Crabtree has called everyone back to the court next Monday when he will deliver a written ruling on the matter of unsupervised visitation.