Tuesday, February 7, 2012


Amie Van Dyk was looking forward to a scheduled visit with her 10-yr old autistic daughter Ayn today. It had been planned for weeks. Amie has not seen Ayn for several months because the Ministry of Children would not arrange it - a vindictive act. Amie missed a visitation months ago for which the Ministry did not adequately inform her and she is a working woman. TODAY, 2 hrs before the visit, the Ministry cancelled it. Why? because Ayn had a meltdown at school. So she was sent home and the decision was made to cancel the visitation. What? Is a meltdown uncommon for an autistic child? Do you eliminate meltdowns by withholding a visit with mommy? Is this punishment? Or did the Ministry or the foster family immediately give her some medication which would make her less than responsive to mommy? This is intolerable conduct by Ministry personnel. Where was humanity and sensitivity and compassion lost in this social work practicum?


  1. Stupid, stupid and yet again stupid. Panic, panic and yet again panic. You can sure see how their little minds work. Ron; your information today reminds us yet again of the impossiblity of trying to deal with these people on a reasonable basis. What chance does mediation have? This also fits in with my next contribution, which will be about searching for any reliable outcomes in dealing with challenging children and especially I want to ask the searching question as to why the social workers can possibly imagine that they can do better than the natural parents. Their track record does not persuade.

  2. Are you kidding me? I can not believe that Ayn's visit with her mom Amie was cancelled because she had a meltdown at school. I suppose I should stop being surprised at anything they do. What would people say if it were a blind child who was refused a visit with a parent because they could not see? Or a deaf child because they did not hear? Ayn is autistic. She will have meltdowns sometimes when she is not able to handle the external stimulation that overwhelms her body. Is removing visits with her mother appropriate? I admit that although I have done extensive research on this case (including speaking with Ayn's father Derek Hoare on several occasions) I do not have every fact or detail. However, it seems that MCFD does not understand that autistic children often elope (wander or try to escape), and that they often have meltdowns (tantrums) when over stimulated. If they did, I do not believe the follow would have happened:

    1. Ayn van Dyk would not have been removed from her father's care & put into the custody of MCFD in June 2011.

    2. Ayn van Dyk would not have been drugged for her meltdowns with drugs that have not been studied and approved for use on children of Ayn's age. The list of side effects is very scary reading. These drugs have been given without the approval of her parents.

    3. The visit with her mother Amie van Dyk would not have been cancelled on February 7, 2012 due to a meltdown at school. While I certainly do not have all the facts of the day at this time, initial reports lead me to believe that the visit should have continued as planned. It appears this child's rights to seeing her family are being violated.

    I believe that Derek Hoare's proposal for Ayn's care should be reviewed and accepted with haste. I believe that there should be an independent review of her needs, and an evaluation of where she can be best cared for. I believe MCFD stated there was no evidence of abuse or neglect early on, but rather they felt Derek could not care for her (evidenced by her tantrums at school, escape by climbing a 6ft fence in her backyard, etc). She continues to have meltdowns. She has escaped at least twice while in MCFD's custody. I believe she should be returned to her father's care. If even a portion of the money that is being given to the foster home were provided to Derek, he would be able to give his girl the exceptional care she deserves, along with the love and understanding that only a parent can provide.

  3. They are just so cruel and heartless, playing with people's lives like that, and that everything depends on their whims,dependent on their decisions.It's just not right.They can just oppress and destroy people and their families and we are all so powerless against it.

  4. Access to visits are used to not only control the behaviour of parents, but also the children. One of our children really did not like foster care and would act out, breaking and throwing things at the foster home, because no one was listening to our child's desire to come home and that our child felt that promises made were constantly being broken. The child protection workers did tell our child that if the behaviour did not improve, then they may be forced to cancel visits with us until our child showed the proper behaviour since visits are a privilage (even though a court order mandated a certain number a week). They told us this too since they wanted us to talk to the child about improving their behaviour while at the foster home.

    Of course if a child's behaviour can't be changed, only managed, as Ray has suggested in previous articles, then MCFD needs to learn the difference and not apply these draconion tactics against a child who may not understand what is happening...

    I still owe you a piece on parental rights, but that may take some time to do since I need to sort out my thoughts.

  5. I have followed this case for a while and find it heartbreaking. I'm from Scotland, so the message is spreading far a wide. Keep it up.

    I am totally appalled at the way this family are being treated. It is clear that nothing is being done to actually keep this family together but just pull them further apart.
    I myself have worked with social workers as a foster carer and to be honest some of them haven't got a clue.I thought it was all about keeping families together? i can't see no evidence of them doing so.

    Forcing mind altering medication on such a young child is wrong. So AYN has meltdowns and the only way to deal with it is basically drug her because thats what they are doing. It's nothing more than abuse!

    If they were so concerned about the parenting of AYN then why are the other two children allowed to stay?

    All children have meltdowns and a child with autism will have a lot more usually due to lack of understanding. I speak from experience. There is always a reason behind a meltdown and a lot of the time our children will not be able to express themselves. Sometimes a nasty look from someone will create a meltdown, its just the little things that can have the biggest affect. A lot of people just dont understand this and just blame and punish the child for being naughty.

    The world is a very confusing place for autistic children. The amount of damage they are doing to this child is going to take a lot to undo when and IF she returns home to the very person that understands her.

    I'm am so sorry this is happening to this poor family and i hope common sense prevails. Sending lots of good wishes to this family that are at the very heart of abuse by authorities because that is what it is!

    Another thing, was AYN told her mum was visiting?

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