I began writing about Paul and Zabeth Bayne's effort to recover their children in 2009, when their case was already two years old. They were suspected of having harmed their youngest of three children. Shaken Baby Syndrome was the Ministry's concern at the time. I was in daily contact with the Baynes, commiserating and gathering information. In order to be reasonably objective as a blogger advocate, I educated myself about the history, the policies, the failures, and the reviews of child welfare in B.C. It became apparent to me that the Ministry's burdensome responsibilities were not consistently managed judiciously, compassionately, economically or in timely fashion. I became quickly aware that there were many parents and families helplessly mired in bureaucratic gorilla tape, and that the Ministry was decidedly adversarial with parents in many of these cases.
It was only when the Baynes received the gratis legal assistance of remarkable courtroom lawyer, the late Doug Christie, assisted by the advice and counsel of child protection expert Ray Ferris, coupled with Zabeth's unwavering will to their defend their integrity as well as to regain her children, that the case was resolved in the parents' favour. The Ministry deserves absolutely no credit for that final outcome, and warrants all of the fault for squandering four years of a family's life, and most of their monetary resources.
This recent judgement by Justice Walker that has exposed to all B.C. residents, the culpability in the management of a case in which children were wrongfully removed from their mother and given into the care of an abusive father, appears to be catalyst for the changes thousands of people have been wishing for years. This time the Ministry's failure is too obvious to conceal or deny and the court will award appropriate penalties. Moreover, it has been sufficiently humiliating, that the Minister and the Premier, and the Representative of Children and Youth, and the Public want an objective review.
Bob Plecas, the man charged with the review