Press one of the expand buttons to see the full text of an article. Later press collapse to revert to the original form. The buttons below expand or collapse all articles.
Cobourg Rally for Daughter
September 30, 2011 permalink
Mother Patricia Bools was tricked into signing papers that gave her daughter to CAS as a crown ward. They told her that her daughter did not want to see her, a common CAS deception, but a recent letter from the girl said the opposite. Some pictures are in Gone For Ten Years (pdf). Tomorrow there will be a rally in Cobourg to bring attention to Patricia's case.
Protest against CAS planned for Saturday
COBOURG — A Mississauga woman who claims the Children's Aid Society (CAS) "stole" her daughter from her 10 years ago and is keeping her away in a Baltimore-area group home is bringing her protest to Cobourg this Saturday.
Patricia Bools told Northumberland Today she is making her case public here because this December her daughter turns 18 and if she has been "brainwashed" by the CAS into believing Bools doesn't want her, her daughter can legally leave and vanish from her life forever.
Peel Region CAS "tricked me into signing papers," Bools said in a telephone interview from her Mississauga home this week. "I didn't know it was for (her to become a) Crown Ward."
Making a child a Crown Ward of the CAS is an action completed through court, but Bools maintains she did not receive proper notice until the court case had already taken place.
Initially, her daughter was at a home in Brampton and Bools said she had "regular visits every Tuesday," but then the child was moved to Falconhurst, a group home near Baltimore, north of Cobourg. No visits have been permitted for the past seven years, Bools claims.
Bools said she has been told by the home's staff her daughter didn't want to see her — but last Friday, Oct. 23, Bools continued, she received the first letter in a long time in which her daughter says she'd like to see her mother. Bools said she recently found out where Falconhurst is but has been told by CAS workers she is not authorized to talk to her daughter.
"She believes I gave her up to the CAS," but that is not so, Bools stressed.
Circumstances involving an abusive former husband led to a hospital visit where the CAS was called in and unfounded assumptions were made at that time, Bools said. Some of the alleged details of the conflict appear on a website that announces Saturday's local protest.
Bools said she has been in touch with several organizations, including Protecting Canadian Children and Canada Court Watch, whose members held a similar protest on Aug. 8 in front of the Northumberland CAS office on Burnham Street in Cobourg as part of a small-town tour en route to Ottawa. She said she expects their members, together with her own family and friends, will attend the protest between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. planned to take place either at the local CAS office again or at the William Street, Cobourg court building near McDonald's restaurant, according to the website.
During the August protest in Cobourg, members held signs decrying what they called "corruption" and "secrecy" of CAS organizations across Ontario, and elsewhere in Canada. One sign read "Stolen Children Want To Go Home" and a spokesperson from Peterborough said the CAS funding criteria are tied to the additional number of children they take into care, leading to children being taken from their own homes.
Northumberland CAS executive director Rosaleen Cutler, during the last protest, said the CAS organizations across Ontario are very accountable and the number of children in care across Ontario is actually declining — not increasing.
She reiterated in an interview this week that each CAS has its own board of directors that governs its operations.
Asked about Bools's protest, Cutler said she was unaware of it.
"I don't know anything about the case," she said.
As to the process, in general, Cutler said children can be placed anywhere in the province and the CAS involved (in this case, Peel Region) contracts directly through the ministry-licensed facilities for these placements. It does not involve the CAS in the region, she said.
When a child is put into care a work plan or series of work plans is put in place and the family is involved. The document is seen by the family before court and the family has time to respond to it before going to court, Cutler said. Given the decade-long struggle described by Bools, the court rules may, however, have changed during that time, Cutler added.
These work plans include how all parties will work together for the child's welfare and the special times parent and child are to be together, Cutler said.
"Usually they are invited to participate in the plan of care through the years," she said.
The protest website is www.projectapril.ca.
Source: Northumberland Today
Addendum: The owner of the site mentioned by Northumberland Today, projectapril.ca, has been threatened, almost certainly by CAS. The domain name was registered on September 8, 2011 and has already been threatened three times. Here is the (undated) communication:
We are contact you in regard of a violation of our Terms of Services. The following abuse report has been received regarding your website at: projectapril.ca and due to this reason we have been forced to suspend the account. Here it is details from the abuse report:
Projectapril.ca site features privileged legal documents regarding proceedings involving this person's daughter. This is an offence which falls under Section 45 Subsection 8 of the Child and Family Services Act and can result in a fine of up to $10, 000 or imprisonment of up to 3 years. The section is titled Prohibition Identifying a Child. We are requesting that this site remove the legal documents or that the site be shut down.
Please contact us at earliest convenience, so this matter could be resolved.
Source: email from informant who prefers to remain anonymous
Though the communication says the account has been suspended, we found it still working as of the morning of September 13.
Persons wishing to expose CAS on the internet should use a web host outside of Canada. A web hosting company will usually favor paying customers over complaints from a foreign country.