Audio, mp3, 16 megabytes

This 2 hour 20 minute mp3 file, 16 megabytes, is the story of a young Hamilton mother, who was herself in foster care when she was a teenager. The first half of the story deals with her experiences as a foster child, second half as a mother.

In the book Cages of Steel edited by Ward Churchill and JJ Vander Wall, Dr Richard Korn describes the treatment of women prisoners in the Lexington High Security Unit:

One of the prisoners reports that she ordinarily requires several large sanitary napkins during her menstual period, which is typically heavy. When she is in need of additional napkins, she is required to request them one at a time. When she attempts discreetly to make her request to a staff member, it is his practice, she reports, to call out for that item in a loud voice, thereby making it known to all that she is once again in need of it. The coarseness and indelicacy of this procedure speaks for itself. What it also underscores in a ritualistically humiliating and public way, is the extreme dependency to which the women have been reduced.

In the opening minutes Candace shows that Children's Aid has learned this technique of humiliation. Later she confirms the opinion of other CAS critics, that most foster children would be better off with their parents.

Candace and her common-law husband had a steady income and could afford to care for a child. During her pregnancy they had a fight in which she attacked him and he called police for help, but the cops arrested him. In times past, ministers or counselors would have helped the couple patch up their differences, but today's social services forced the couple apart. When Candace was in labor, dad showed up at the hospital, where police beat him. At the age of two days, CAS used misdirection to steal the baby girl from Candace in the hospital. CAS forced her to modify her crib, ordered her to retake her parenting classes, attend a domestic violence group, and engage in other senseless activities. At every command, CAS threatened Candace with another removal of her child. A mandatory report of diaper rash turned into four days of harassment. A continued campaign of harassment prevented the baby from seeing her father. CAS forbid Candace to have a boyfriend or date -- when she did have one date, CAS broke the relationship with a criminal background check. What man would want a second date with a girl after the police start asking questions? Candace will never again call the police for any problem less serious than homicide.

Canada Court Watch has a disk with the entire interview including video. We extracted just the sound.