Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Your Comments about Virtual Visitation / Part 430 / For Love and For Justice / Zabeth and Paul Bayne

On Wednesday, November 17, 2010 in a post entitled VIRTUAL VISITATION / Part 370 / For Love and For Justice / Zabeth and Paul Bayne, there were 26 comments from readers. 

Photograph by: File photo, Postmedia News

The post spoke to the digital leap of technology in the area of visitation options available to parents and children, that perhaps in the near future, parents may request a judge's order to the Child Protective unit to include 'virtual visitation' each night before bedtime and much more.  You wrote..........
It would be appropriate to forgive the naivety of your suggestion given you have not personally experienced the removal of your children... While I have two current BC Supreme Court Custody orders (one is 5 years old) mandating web cam contact, I was unable to use this as a basis to convince a lower court Provincial Judge it was in the best interests of the children to have such contact... The given reason for refusal was to protect the privacy of the foster parent...
In my case, the other parent of my children was located in another city, and in-person visits involved an expensive plane trip and hotel stay, and expensive supervised visits.

I argued for web cam access on multiple occasions before two BC Provincial Judges. On my first application, the court adjourned the matter of web cam access pending a PCA (Parental Capacity Assessment) internet availability and wishes of the foster parent. The PCA was passed with flying colors, however MCFD still refused web cam access, again citing "privacy" considerations.
I got no more than 3 hours of supervised access per week in my home. I was not able to extend this unless I paid for a supervisor at a rate of $40/hr plus $40 travel charges.

I gave my daughter a web cam-equipped laptop with wireless Rogers WiMax internet access and a video-capable cell phone. Neither worked because of the distant area the foster home was located, and both devices were later confiscated. Now, we have cheap video-capable i pods and WI-Max USB dongles and i Pads with 3G wireless access, and GPS capable cell phones to pinpoint children's locations. A potential MCFD nightmare.
Despite all of these potential issues, a video call with a young child cannot hold a candle to telephone call.
NOTE: The comment option has been shut off until February 20th. I regret this interruption and I look forward to continuing our coverage of the Bayne case as soon as something further develops.

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