However, changes or reforms to child protection policy and practice would help the countless others locked into the same cycle of heartache that the Baynes have experienced over the past three years and two months.
Changes to the existing system are absolutely imperative for the sake of families needlessly torn apart, for the sake of children needlessly torn from their parents and everyone who is loving and familiar, for the sake of children needlessly subjected to a chaotic system of foster care, for the sake of parents who needlessly lose children, dignity, resources, jobs and sanity, and for the sake of child protection workers who could devote their time to locating children who are in real danger.
Those necessary changes require more than 'awareness raising.' Actual change requires amendments to the existing Child and Family Community Services Act and the ways by which it is being interpreted by both the Ministry of Children workers and by the legal system. Recommendations for such changes must be made by those who have gained a good reputation for clear-headed discernment of child protection issues in our society and for a common sense compassionate agenda for family preservation. Perhaps then we may gain an audience in this province among well-respected journalists and reform-minded child welfare professionals who will step up to become advocates for change in their own disciplines.
What is needed for British Columbia and for that matter, in Canada, is a movement that becomes an extraordinary advocate for child welfare reform with an impact all over the country. Such a movement will distinguish itself as a voice of reason that can discuss the defects of the Ministry of Children without resorting to rhetoric that denounces the Third Reich. It will be a movement that provides insights into child welfare practices across the country by helping to distill thinking about the correct role and responsibility for government in the lives of children and families.
This Blog has been advocating the return of three children to their biological parents, Paul and Zabeth Bayne, for which a ruling is expected from Judge Crabtree within the next two weeks. Stay posted.