PLEASE sign: Petition to STOP Bill 179 & Petition to Support Bill 183
*You DO NOT need to be from the province of Ontario or from Canada to qualify to sign*
The sole requirement is that you need to truly care about the safety & welfare of innocent, vulnerable, voiceless children.
EVERYONE… PLEASE TAKE ACTION TO STOP BILL 179 BY AT THE VERY LEAST SIGNING THE PETITION TO THE GOVERNMENT TO VOICE THIS!
THEN SIGN THE PETITION ASKING THE GOV’T TO APPROVE BILL 183 TO EXPAND THE ONTARIO OMBUDSMAN’S MANDATE TO OVERSEE THE CAS SYSTEM.
Bill 179 is piece of legislation that is draconian personified; it is positioned as being about caring for children, but in reality it is absolutely NOTHING about child protection!!
Bill 179 is an expedited license for the CAS to move innocent children around like pawns as it sees fit to suit funding needs or alleviate funding pressures… to ensure job protection for CAS workers… to ensure the CAS system is successfully sold to the public as a “white knight” NEEDED service… all to ensure the present day CAS’s survival in perpetuity.
Bill 179 could not be further away from the protection and safety of children. Children are simply the commodity, the vehicle to keep a VERY broken, unrepairable and profoundly corrupt CAS system in Ontario in BUSINESS…
This is the same “CAS system” that stole/coerced/kidnapped thousands upon
thousands of children in Ontario during the Baby Scoop Era (BSE). Bill 179 is akin to a revival of the BSE, except this time it will be armed with real legislative power and rights to apprehend children and farm them out for adoption.. all within a 30 day period!
Valerie Andrews from Origins Canada presented the following against this bill:ORIGINS CANADA – BILL 179 COMMITTEE- May 16, 2011
Standing Committee on Social Policy – May 16, 2011 – Bill 179,
Building Families and Supporting Youth to be Successful Act, 2011
Thank you. My name is Valerie Andrews and I am the Executive Director of Origins Canada which is a Federal non-profit organization advocating for approximately one million natural mothers and adult adoptees in Canada. We have some serious concerns regarding Bill 179 and appreciate the opportunity to present them here today.
1. STAKEHOLDERS NOT INCLUDED/BIASED TOWARDS PEOPLE HOPING TO ADOPT
Problem: Bill 179 is based on a report that did not include the key stakeholders in adoption.
Bill 179 is based on the report “Raising Expectations” which was tabled August 26, 2009, a report that did not include the key stakeholders in adoption. As a note, it must be stated at the outset that infertility and adoption are not related. Adoption is not a “cure” for infertility.
When Province of Ontario appointed its “Expert Panel on Infertility and Adoption” in 2008, it did not include natural families, adoptees, the Foster Care Council of Canada, or any other appointees that would hold any opposing views or speak for the actual people who are affected by adoption separation. Those who are separated by adoption do not include prospective adoptive parents.
Instead, the “expert panel” was made up of adopters, adoption lawyers, fertility experts, private adoption businesses, infertility support groups, and others who represented only one point of view: people who have adopted or intend to adopt. This was a one sided “think tank” with an agenda that has nothing to do with children, but has everything to do with the desires of infertile couples. The problem of infertility, although very sad, does not entitle people to “form forever families” at the expense of others. Adoption is no longer an altruistic institution, but is big business. In fact, it is a 3.4 billion dollar industry in the USA alone.
At the time, Origins Canada wrote to Deb Matthews and asked to be included in the panel, and received a form letter. We wrote to David Johnston, the Chair of the committee, and asked to be included, but were ignored. None of these responses were surprising to us as the agenda of the “Expert Panel” was clear.
Even the title of the report, “Raising Expectations” refers to increasing the number of children for infertile couples. We state for the record that Origins has no issue with supporting infertile couples with infertility treatments using their own egg and sperm, but that our concerns deal only with the adoption issues of the Bill and the trend towards emphasis on the desires of people hoping to adopt.
In the report “The Rights of the Child,” M. Juan Miguel Petit, Special Rapporteur for the United Nations, states:
“Regrettably, in many cases, the emphasis has changed from the desire to provide a needy child with a home, to that of providing a needy parent with a child. As a result, a whole industry has grown, generating millions of dollars of revenues each year, seeking babies for adoption and charging prospective parents enormous fees to process paperwork.”
“the Special Rapporteur was alarmed to hear of certain practices within developed countries, including the use of fraud and coercion to persuade single mothers to give up their children.”
Leaving out the key stakeholders in adoption is wrong, and speaks to the agenda of this Bill. Mothers of adoption separation and their children have been left out of the decision-making process for far too long.
2. ACCESS ORDERS
Problem: Bill 179 does not protect the rights of children and their natural families
Clause 141.1 of the proposed Bill states:
“Where a society begins planning for the adoption of a child who is a Crown Ward, the society shall consider the benefits of an openness order or an openness agreement in respect of the child”.
Without Ombudsman oversight, the 53 Children’s Aid Societies in Ontario will continue to act with impunity in these matters. They will also have 53 different interpretations of the law. They will not hesitate to abandon access in favour of adoption, since they have a long history of being biased in favour of people hoping to adopt.
Origins Canada has received testimony from countless natural parents and adopted persons that supports the conclusion that the seventy-year history of Children’s Aid Societies in Ontario with respect to adoption includes: the illegal detainment of children, using coercion to illegally obtain adoption consents, lying to mothers about the traumatic impact of adoption separation, withholding resources and information to mothers regarding their rights, and placing children in abusive homes leading to injury and death.
Evidence thus strongly suggests that the Children‘s Aid Societies in Ontario cannot be trusted to uphold the rights of parents with respect to access. Bill 179 will expand their existing power to ignore the rights of natural mothers and extended family — all without the checks and balances of an Ombudsman or any other elected official to oversee their deeds. This is a step backward, not forward, for Ontario’s mothers and children.
Clause 143.1 states
“When a child is placed for adoption by a society or licensee, every order respecting access to the child is terminated, including an access order made under Part III in respect of a Crown Ward”.
The United Nations’ Convention of the Rights of the Child states
Article 9: Parties shall respect the right of the child who is separated from one or both parents to maintain personal relations and direct contact with both parents on a regular basis, except if it is contrary to the child’s best interests.
Current access orders that are in place for Crown Wards have been carefully thought-out by Ontario Court Judges. Terminating these orders goes against the Court and against the right of a child to have access to his or her natural parents. This is a crime against children, a violation of the Rights of the Child which Canada has ratified.
These children will grow up without their natural families and this Bill will be to blame for the pain and suffering caused to them by separating them from their natural families whom they love. All this so that infertile couples are free to “form forever families“ without the “nasty bother” of a child‘s mother and family.
Any current Access Orders in place by a Court of Law in Ontario must be upheld in the adoption of a Crown Ward.
3. NOTICE TO NATURAL PARENTS
Problem: Bill 179 provides no guarantee of notice to natural parents.
“Section 145.1.1 Notice,” provides natural families with 30 days to apply for an Openness order upon the notice of the adoption of their child, that is, if they are in town, not on vacation, not in hospital, or otherwise occupied.
This section has been entirely created to terminate access to natural families for children with no respect for the rights of children and natural families.
Adoptions done in this way will cause many future problems, and there will be many mistakes made in the lives of children and families for which this Bill will be responsible.
This section must be amended to more accurately reflect the rights of natural families.
Problem: Bill 179 frames adoption as a “first resort,” increasing adoption rates at the expense of natural families.
With the introduction of Bill 179, a newborn baby with a mother who is arbitrarily deemed to be “at risk” will quickly become a commodity, and any chance for a troubled mother to regain her child will simply disappear. Her parental rights will be severed and the child adopted all within 30 days. There will be no mechanism to ensure that her human rights and parental rights are protected, she is provided with required resources, or that she can present her case in court. This opens the door for more abuse of power by Children’s Aid Societies to obtain a supply of newborns for the adoption market, and will take us back to the Baby Scoop Era of the 1950‘s and 1960‘s. Haven’t we learning anything from those terrible times? Grieving mothers, searching children? Adoption is never a “quick fix”. It is a life sentence for those separated by adoption.
The true agenda of this bill is revealed when one reads….“No person or society can apply for a status review if a child has been placed in a person’s home for the purposes of adoption”. This does not protect children, this protects adopters.
Permanently separating mother and child should always be the very last resort in a civilised society, and then only if the mother poses some harm to her child which is cannot be resolved, and then only when all other kinship opportunities are exhausted.
As the representatives from “Children in Limbo” have already presented in this committee, Legal Guardianships and Kinship agreements are not being utilized enough to help children that have been taken into care in the Province of Ontario. Modern domestic adoption is completely unnecessary to provide stable homes for children.
Adoption is not something to be encouraged by society. It is not an ideal to strive for. Supporting mothers and children should be the goal of modern society. Many countries are rethinking adoption and reforming adoption law. Australia has decreased adoptions, and currently in Australia there is a Federal Inquiry into adoption practices and the damage done to mothers and their children by governments which support adoption.
The Ontario Government should be aware that this Inquiry is coming to Canada as well, and many mothers and adult adoptees are already registering and submitting their stories to us.
Origins Canada 2011
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