Sunday, December 5, 2010

DESTROY OR REFORM/ Part 389 / For Love and For Justice / Zabeth and Paul Bayne

If you can't shut down MCFD then reform it. What do you think about that?

While VOCA (Voices of Children Alliance) derives from concerns over child protection in Ontario, we have already learned that the concerns there are identical to those in all provinces, including British Columbia.

This link takes you to a fascinating page on the VOCA site that is highly supportive to families where the MCFD has intercepted normal family life and removed children for a variety of reasons. It begins with the assertion that the Child Protection system that operates in B.C. needs to be abolished. Then, given the reality that the political will is unprepared to destroy CPS, a second alternative is to introduce reforms to policy and to the legal system. There is even a section that speaks about harmful reform suggestions, a few of which some of you may have recommended.

Following an insightful preliminary paragraph, a content table is provided and then each of the titles on that index is opened up with well developed thoughts. It is worth a read.

For instance you find in the opener entitled “Reform for Children's Aid,” the following statements.
“The only real remedy for the abuses of the child protection system is its abolition. No one should have the power to take children from their parents by force of arms, and the upkeep of children should not be paid with appropriated funds. Once the child protection behemoth is dead, private charity can easily handle the small load of orphaned children, as it responded to the much larger number of homeless children a century ago before the creation of the welfare state.”

“Since the political will to eliminate the child protection system is nowhere near to realization, we have here a list of lesser reforms that may alleviate the hardships in the current system, and lead toward more comprehensive reforms. This list includes all known suggestions for reform, most politically impractical, some that are useless, and a few that might aggravate the current problems. The suggestions are more to stimulate discussion than legislation. Do not waste effort mailing the list to your MPP. The suggestions are organized into policy reforms, reforms to the legal system, and dubious reforms that may do more harm than good.”


  1. It is a good list. The shear number of items and the fact that any parent involved with child protection anywhere in the Western World can immediately identify with large numbers of these issues indicates the magnitude of the problem.

    The problem is, each item listed on the page is worth a blog page on its own.

    Take this one item that has the word 'children' in it, for example:

    Recognize right of children to parents
    Policy should recognize that children have a right to their parents.

    For young children, this means that the decisions of parents take precedence to the decisions of service providers such as teachers, doctors or social workers.

    For grown children, this means the right to know the identity of their parents, and the rest of the family tree.

    For just about every item, there is legal argument that explains why authorities can ignore the concern. This means many days of hearing, hundreds if not thousands of pages of materials and many witnesses. Child protection has the advantage of weight of legal opinion and precidence.

    A change of law is indeed required to remove state authority to terminate parental rights so easily.

    In the forgoing VOCA statement, the CFCSA DOES "recognize" parent's right to their children. To address this, they allow 1-9 hours weekly supervised access. Problems solved, right? It is a joke. Arbitrary restriction of access by the state is quite simply, a crime that outweighs whatever the concern is. The problem is that insufficient legal horsepower has not been used to combat the problem. (Someone please insert links here to prove me wrong.)

    Parental rights are removed to PREVENT them from 'undermining' the state's parenting efforts during the time of removal. This is why parents can rarely convince judges to give them more access, or keep the children's routine intact, community and friendship contacts, church - you name it.

    The Baynes have managed to inch up their access to what most parents will consider is remarkable, 9 hours per week, 6 in the home. Remember, this is a Continuing Care Order!

    The Representative of Children and Youth are not fighting for any children to have more access with their parents. It is not economically viable. MCFD artificially constrains supervision resources to knock down visitation times on purpose. There is no standard that states the appropriate minimum time parents can spend with children.

    So the problem here with this single observed issue, is the question has not yet been correctly formulated so that some action can be planned to address the matter.

  2. To protect the future generation from the "child protection" racket, we need not to shut down the entire MCFD. Be mindful that "child protection" is only one of the many MCFD mandates. Although I am unsure whether MCFD performs well in carrying out its other mandates, the harm on families and ironically children from its "child protection" activity is beyond doubt.

    Don't fool yourself that any reform less than revoking child removal authority will do any good. This racket and the subsequent corruption all come from this undue power. Revoke it and be done with it.

    Political will can be cultivated if politicians know that there is political consequences of not revoking this oppressive law and continue to support special interests in this industry. Politicians are opportunists. Many place their own interests ahead of those of their constituents. They will act only when their pay cheque and MLA pension are in jeopardy.

    If no existing party is interested to take on them, you saints could form a new party. There is room for a third choice in the next election. Be mindful that this is a difficult and dangerous mission. People conveniently died trying.


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