Thursday, July 28, 2011


We have celebrated the news that Paul and Zabeth will have their children returned to them in August, beginning with the Aug. 2nd homecoming of Josiah, the five month old boy who was removed from Zabeth four hours after he was born in February of this year. Then on August 25th the arrival of Kent, Baden and Bethany will represent the restoration of family life. That is what the case worker has promised Paul and Zabeth. He gave permission to the Baynes to inform their own children about this event and that was done last week. That was when we could cooperatively go public with this news. However, .................. forget the however, first of all ................

It does follow the script written by the Judge Thomas Crabtree ruling of March 10, 2011. In that ruling His Honour rejected the Ministry claim that one of the Baynes was responsible for shaking Bethany to cause severe injury to her in Autumn 2007; denied to the Ministry a Continuing Care Order yet did retain the children in care for three months; then suggested that the Baynes view this as a window of opportunity to comply with Ministry provisos in view of a return of the children which he concurred was in the best interests of the child. The Baynes agreed to a full Parental Capacity Assessment (PCA) and Parenting course. The affirming PCA report written by psychologist Dr. Conrad Bowden likely affected the positive outcome more than we know.

There have been convincing indications that MCFD will be true to its word on this action plan. For some weeks the children have been granted unsupervised visits with Paul and Zabeth, and latterly there have been scheduled overnights (unsupervised). These steps are part of the adjustment required for the children in particular, who must transition contentedly and affectively from foster care with which they are very familiar and at ease, to the care of their biological parents’ whom they love. At least the two older boys have recall of the early years at home with Paul and Zabeth. We only guess at the psychological/emotional challenge for Bethany for whom foster care has been the anchor point in her life from her first memories until now, first with one foster family with whom she stayed for two years and latterly with the present foster family.

And yet, despite the promise of a return of the children, and the optimistic signals emitted by the unsupervised visitation, I have had more than one person tell me, “I will believe it when I see it.” I find myself inclined to that same profoundly distressing sentiment. It is disagreeable for me to state such a cynical response about a government ministry in which I should be able to have confidence and faith. It places a damper on my enthusiasm and may even cast a pall over the readers of this blog who like me have been waiting supportively, prayerfully, eagerly for this Bayne Family reunion. I apologize for that, but keep in mind that the month of August with unsupervised visits and overnights, and Josiah living at home until the scheduled permanent return of the other three children is not only a practical action plan of transition but also a highly monitored Test Run. My level of trust in anyone associated with the Bayne children within the Ministry Care program is so low that I will believe it when I see it. When I see it, I will publicly thank the local social working detachment for affecting this return.


  1. Nothing is beneath MCFD, we know that now. Anyone who thinks this gang has reformed their ways only needs to look at the case of Derek Hoare, who had his 9 year old autistic daughter Ayn, stolen, drugged beyond belief with 3 anti-psychotics, and subject to conditions which would be called blatant abuse if it were done by a parent.

    Maybe it's time for government "care" to start proving how safe it is before stealing children from good parents.

    Maybe it's time to start focusing on the judges that enable this sick system.

  2. Perhaps there is an internal MCFD policy to this effect, but it appears to me that once the front line workers permit unsupervised access, the children will definitely return. They go through the motions of appearing to be careful, monitoring the children after the return of each visit.

    This graduated return was done this to me as well, but over a six month period. First returning one child, followed by the remaining children two months later.

    Returning the infant first makes it appear as if MCFD's concern is not to overwhelm the parents with the return of all four children at once.

    Meanwhile, of course, the foster parents have a fixed-date care contract and they continue receiving the big bucks whether or not the child is there. Who knows if the social workers get a nice big fat financial kickback in appreciation from those foster parents. I would love to see their bank accounts.

    In my opinion, MCFD never had concerns with the parenting ability of the Baynes from day one. Their sorry-ass dilemma was how to remove the three children on the strength of a doctors SBS diagnosis for one child, when there was no cooberating social factors or supporting third party information.

    MCFD later solved this 'dilemma' by labelling the family uncooperative. Lack of cooperation is defined as not accepting MCFD's free services such as a PCA psychologist the parent may be suspicious of, and the Project Parent counselling who's reports would have been used against them in court. It's all very standard treatment for any family.

    Being forced to accept these 'services' after the trial really is the best possible scenario, give the fact the six month start-to-return cycle is comparitively quick. It is just abominable the trial took a wait time of three years.

    The penalty for going public should be clear: MCFD responds by keeping children in care longer. Win or lose, that time is gone forever and cannot be recovered. MCFD counts on repeat business by hoping that their removal messes up the child enough that they can expect future intervention to again save the day.

    Child Protection has evolved to such a state that it is difficult to identify and target any one of their numerous problems to fix first.

    Police forward cases to MCFD. MCFD uses police opinions as quasi-evidence.

    Teachers report children to MCFD. MCFD pays the education system to run anti-bullying or other 'children at risk' programs.

    Daycares are subsidized by MCFD, so they are in turn happy to report the smallest bruise of a child.

    Select educational institutions receive funding from MCFD to develop studies that put MCFD at the end of the 'solution' for things like dealing with young children at risk. MCFD gets to decide what constitutes risk.

    Judges are gutless wonders who rubberstamp MCFD removals to the tune of 3,000 to 3,500 yearly (see How is it 98% of such judgments find no problem with the warrantless removals of these children?

    There is the health sector that also gets significant donations from MCFD so they can setup in-house abuse-specific diagnostics to see if they can turn a bruise into a child abuse concern. After all, a bruise means a parent was either not watching a child closely enough, or abuse of the child occurred at the hands of the parent.

    Then there is the matter of consistency delivery of services. Some parents get only 1 hour per week of visitation. Derek Hoare nor the child's mother, still, after 6 weeks of removal has not seen his children.

    Sometimes, when you have an old clunker that still operates but is as ugly as sin, dangerous to operate and as smelly as an untreated mushroom factory, it is time to douse it with gasoline, fill it with dynamite and as it goes over the cliff into the sea, pump a few shotgun shell rounds into it for good measure. Adios Betsy. Time to shop for a new solution.


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