Friday, November 4, 2011

Could this happen to you? - An Update!

A few months ago I first posted the sad, but true story of an autistic daughter in BC who was forcibly removed from the care of her loving, devoted father (original post here). 4 months have passed and little Ayn has still not been returned to her father, Derek. I have continued to follow the daily trials that Derek has been going through in attempting to have his daughter returned from the care of the Ministry of Children and Family Development on a Facebook page that has been set up, called "Help Bring little Autistic girl back to her Daddy"  Today, Derek posted a media release on that site.  It is with great pleasure that I share this with you all. 

"Nov 4 2011

  It has now been over four and a half months since I have seen my daughter. I have given my all for her, from the first moment I laid my eyes on her in the delivery room I knew my heart was hers. I would never harm her, nor am I accused of such, I have done nothing except dedicate my life to try to nuture and understand her. She has been ripped from her family for no other reason then the misperception that she was an unmanageable deteriorating child. Nothing could be further from the truth, Ayn is a wonderful caring child. She is autistic yes and as such often has a hard time explaining what she wants; she has an astute understanding of body language and a very strong will. Though verbal and possessing a large vocabulary Ayn still struggles to share with others her desires, fears, and thoughts. She continues to ask for me, she continues to assert that I am coming... She knows I would not abandon her. Yet the Ministry of Children and Family Development continues to hold her from me. On Oct 18 the government sought court approval for temporary custody for 90 days, again I refused to consent to this, and since this is my continued stance an effort will be made to determine if trial is necessary or whether mutual consent can be achieved between the parties. This step is called the Case Conference and has been scheduled over 90 days away.... on Jan 23rd. If this is the case why ask for 90 days? Why even pretend to ask? My reasons for refusal will not be heard. I continue to wait for hearing after hearing, never being given the opportunity to even speak... at the conclusion of each simply another is scheduled, in effect you go to the back of the line struggling to merge schedules to obtain the next soonest date. 
Ayn has escaped from the care of the Ministry twice now in four months, the second time naked, drugged, wet and wandering as far as the "main street", police were called, Ayn discovered and returned. I will be told nothing or rather I will be told whatever the MCFD chooses to tell me. "It is under investigation" I hear, but the first time she escaped was months ago surely something is known by now? She was being watched and drugged while under the care of the MCFD by a 15 year old fellow foster child.... "still under investigation". Why was the window not locked in the bathroom where she was bathing unattended?... "under investigation". The MCFD is supposed to be trained to identify emotional abuse is it not? How can they ignore it when they are the source. Ayn was in no more danger here than her disability engendered, all I am asking for is her to be returned to me immediately. If they would like to do an investigation by all means, but we are over 4 months in now and as of yet no-one has been asked how Ayn was in the Home, the very place she is being kept from. She has been returned to the school where the "deterioration" was observed. She has been returned to their care from where she has twice escaped. They have offered me unsupervised access effective immediately... yet will not return her to me. This is a nightmarish power struggle with an institution whose named function is family development. Whose guiding principles are: "a family is the preferred environment for the care and upbringing of children and the responsibility for the protection of children rests primarily with the parents" (CFCSA 2b) and "decisions relating to children should be made and implemented in a timely manner" (CFCSA 2g).  
My life has been dedicated to my children, I continue to care for my sons, I do so happily and have never once complained about the tribulations I face raising 2 severely autistic kids. They are both happy and thriving children and there is nothing to suggest otherwise... I am angry, I am in pain, I suffer... and do you know what it doesn't matter... Ayn is all that matters. She does not deserve this, she is just as much a citizen as: the social workers involved, the different judges overseeing this, You or I. Yet she is being treated as chattel, her sadness towards my absence used against me, my advocacy for her to get proper services used against me, all the while she sits in a basement wondering where her family went, not knowing why this happened. Did she do something wrong? Do we not want her anymore? She has no ability to comprehend the ministry's legal wranglings, all she knows is she has been forcefully removed from those whom she loved and had spent every day of her life... Does it make it any better that she has been placed with an assortment of caregivers who may be very nice people? Having good people do the wrong thing is not a benefit. They are kept in the dark, as is the public.... as am I. And now to wait past her Dec 14th birthday, past Christmas... and into the New Year.... for a "case conference" where even there I will not get to argue for her return but will receive a date where that could happen.... a date which could in all likelyhood be a year or more later..... Is this why we created such an institution? Please Help Ayn to come home, she is just as much a person as you or I and should not be treated in such a manner. We love her so dearly... I will never relent... this will have been all for nothing; the only net result being a little disabled girl who will never know why or when she could be snatched again."

To find out how you can support Derek and Ayn please join this Facebook site:
You can also sign a petition in support of her release:
And support this family through your Tweets by following: @Justice4Ayn

1 comment:

  1. While the story is sad and I really hope she makes her way back home as soon as possible, the name of that Facebook group is offensive. It should be "Help Bring A Little Girl with Autism home." People should always be put before their diagnosis.




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