Saturday, February 25, 2017

Social Workers: Are they overworked, underpaid, unsung heroes, saviours of children, or devils in disguise?

In B.C., the Ministry of Children and Family Development has several thousand child protection social workers, many of whom are the legally designated parents of all the 7,000-8,000 children in care.

Social workers entirely subcontract their parenting duties to third parties. These external service providers that render their care services for kids includes foster care, group homes, special care secure residential facilities, even kinship care, where grandparents or relatives may be caring for kids, but have no legal standing as parents did, and are paid half the amount of foster parents (but even that is several times more than child tax credits for biological parents).

There social workers who focus on investigation who may personally do the removal of children they are tasked with. After hours workers, for example, who may perform no investigative duties, are tasked with dealing with children that need to be removed at non-office working hours, such as Christmas, a child or parents birthday, a long weekend, after 5pm, and so on.

Other social workers specialize in day-to-day care, arranging supervised access visits between parents and social workers, delivering materials for trial, testifying against parents, terminating and rescheduling visits at will in hopes of pissing off parents, denying access on weekends and special days. This is usually the most hated class of social workers.

In the J.P. case, social worker Ziny Pop in trial stated that arranging for visitation times for each parent was a full time job for one worker.  The Team Leader, William Strickland was the individual that was lambasted by Mr. Justice Walker in his 341 page ruling, the only work in Canada found to have committed misfeasance in the course of his duties, thus stripping him of the usual qualified immunity protection afforded to such workers when they do nasty things during they course of their questionable duties.

The BC lawyers arguing for MCFD passed on bitter complaints by the social workers about their names being published in a blog, but the judge took no action. The tax-paid individuals are subjected to exactly the same level of criticism as politicians. They are fair game in the exercise of journalistic commentary on the performance of their duties, whether that be good or bad.

It is the FAMILIES that deserve anonymity. Most families are scared of retaliation by workers involved in their case. There kids can be retained indefinitely. Their kids can be re-removed. Their friends and families kids can be removed.

In the Baynes case, social workers (photo of SW and link to videos, add photos of Baynes) had a great deal of publicity and a 30-day trial, managed to get their four kids back.



In Salmon Arm, the reprehensible social worker Rhonda Bailey was embarrassingly caught on tape screaming at her clients Kevin and Magda. Despite media attention, this social worker had the New Westminster social workers remove the child at birth from the hospital. She then VERY quickly proceeded in court and adopted out that child. The parents were not given a chance to parent their child, because of an angry MCFD social worker that knew how to work the system.

Viorica Lungu's traumetized kids, prevented from returning
home by the dour looking worker pictured glowering at mom.
Viorica Lungu's two kids, in the picture above, are terrified and crying after realizing they were prevented from returning home with their mom after cowardly social workers apprehended them FROM mom during a (non-MCFD) supervised visit with their dad. (Mom had primary access, dad had limited supervised access at the time. MCFD social workers interfered with a custody battle, and reversed that for dad, because they were pissed off their help did not result in full custody for dad the first time around in custody court.)


Viorica Lungu, Vancouver BC

Before MCFD's interference with custody matters, Viorica had primary care of her two kids. MCFD social workers interfered with custody proceedings and removed them from her, and placed them with dad, then later testified in family court to ensure mom would lose at her custody trial with her allegedly drug-dealing husband. Once they accomplished that, they promptly withdrew from child protection proceedings. So, there was no judge that listened to whether or not the "removal" was valid in the first place.

MCFD Social Worker Laurel Fossett, Vancouver Island BC
In another case several years ago, terrible travesty of so-called "child protection" justice, where a Vancouver Island mother lost her beautiful blond blue-eyed pre-school child in a CCO (Continuing Care Order) in a marathon 30-day trial, who has submitted a whole laundry list of confrontational social workers and counsellors that summarizes as wolves in sheep's clothing. She states these individuals made her life a living hell for many years. They lied to her, they misrepresented the true nature of their self-proclaimed "help" and hid their true agenda, which was to permanently deprive the child of her parents and extended family.
  • Laurel Fossett (pictured above, post-removal social worker)
  • Lisen Karlstrom (removing social worker)
  • Kevin Looysen (team leader dude)
  • Lynda Bradley (Mary Manning Centre art therapist)
  • Erin Laird supervised access (Chryalis Counselling, Mom paid $1,000/mo supervisor $200/visit)
  • Cheryl Adams (counsellor - weekly for 2 months) (www.cheryladams.ca)
  • Jennifer Barrett, MCFD Victoria lawyer at Quadra Legal
  • Carrie Crowley
  • Shawn (Shaun) Devore (a female parenting program counsellor from the C'Nex program at Burnside Gorge Community Centre - weekly for 6 months)
Supervised access
Mom says that not EVERYONE involved in her case was nasty. An example of was the supervised access worker Beth Leghorn, who had 15 years experience watching parents and their children. She stated verbally and in writing that the Mother and her child had an exceptional bond. MCFD allowed only 1 hour twice a week which Mom thought was ridiculous, so she paid for extra visits to an MCFD-recommended supervisor, a rather well fed Erin Laird at a mind boggling $200 per visit, an additional $1,000 monthly cost. THAT fact wasn't mentioned in the judges ruling. Other parents such as the Bayne family got 9 hours weekly, and J.P. vs MCFD lawsuit, both she and dad seperately got 11 hours access weekly.

Beth wrote dozens of positive supervised access reports that proved mom had a great bond with her child and that no protection concerns were evident. Beth even wrote a supporting affidavit for the mother. MCFD fired Beth and terminated access, when social workers identified an incident (a "scary" popular kids TV show that the supervised access worker says Mom forced her child to watch). MCFD refused to have Beth come to court to say anything positive about mom. In the court ruling, NONE of this evidence was mentioned. Omission of this very significant evidence, and failure by MCFD to have a parenting capacity assessment done by an impartial psychologist, and pure focus on assembling as many counsellors to perform character assassination targeting mom, all combined to ensure MCFD, through Laurel Fossett's efforts, would win a CCO to terminate mom and dad's parental rights permanently. As well as the rest of the extended family members, grandparents, cousins, aunts and uncles.

Lisen Karlstrom is reported by one parent as receiving a police referral after a "domestic", who then proceeded to manufacture a case against a child's parents to ensure they would never get their child back. This parent described Lisen as "evil", far worse than Laurel Fossett. Lisen is the social worker that "ripped" the child from their parents, and testified in court against the family. The interesting thing about Ms. Lisen, is there is ZERO hits on any internet searches in Google, or the legal database of judgements Canlii.org. Any parent that can submit photos and cooberate some of these observations listed here is invited to submit comments.

Laurel Fossett was the "after removal" social worker that arranges access visits, talks with the parents and foster home contractors. She is described by the parent who dealt with her as "semi retarded" (LOL) who wants/needs to please the authorities that she answers too. Laurel was described as "worse than Lisen Karlstrom".

Cheryl Adams of Victoria was presented to mom as necessary step to cooperate with counseling as a prerequisite to return her child, "reunification". Cheryl came to the mom's house each week for 2 months. Mom honestly thought the lady was there to help, but this individual ended up testifying against mom in court. Apparently, this lady's ONLY purpose was to gain mom's trust in order to get *anything* MCFD could possibly use in court in order to win. In the end, it became clear to mom that all this counselling was only used to drag things out to allow MCFD to prepare for a CCO. "Pure Evil" is what mom's opinion of this lady is.

Shawn/Saun Devore was another counsellor C'Nex Programme that ran a different parenting program that mom participated weekly for 6 months. It was supposed to be with BOTH mom and child, but that promise was broken. So, here was yet another counsellor who's only purpose was to gather derogatory information from mom for MCFD to use in court against her to win.

Lynda Bradley was the child's "art therapist". It was her job to elicit the fears from the preschool child that were negatively associated with the parents. Never did this lady watch the child interact with her parents. In contrast, to further denigrate the parents, Lynda said the child was "very attached" to the foster parents.... presumably that meant that she went to the trouble of seeing the child interact with the foster parents, but made a point of not witnessing the child with her real parents. Clearly, any positives were to be minimized, if not eliminated.

In any case, MCFD had a clear agenda for Ms. Bradley to paint parents as negatively as possible, and going by the ruling, she was certainly successful. There wasn't an ounce of reunification effort involved in this exercise, it was straight negative evidence mining. Yet, the judge made a point of saying that this was not the case. The one tiny positive was the child spoke positively of her mom and negatively of her dad. This is the individual that recommended terminating access with mom, several months before the trial was to begin, thus ensuring MCFD could say that because of the extreme danger of allowing mom and child to continue to interact, that would represent a significant negative against family reunification.

In one section of the ruling, this lady cites the child's behaviour regression

The danger of MCFD-provided counselling
Clearly, promises to parents by MCFD social workers with the promise of reunification, if only parents would "cooperate" with THEIR counsellors and any other assessors must be taken with a grain of salt, if not downright trepidation by parents.

Mom thought she was doing great, participating in all these various parenting programs and attending the counselling sessions MCFD was throwing at her. But, in reality, they were using these programs and the experts to extract information to build up a case against her; to build up a "preponderance of evidence" by using respected experts that the court would see were all against mom. The objective was to paint such an incredibly negative picture, that the judge would see that clearly, mom could not be allowed to have her child returned to her. Dad, by the way, was completely ignored by social workers and was not allowed any access or remedial help.


MCFD-contracted counsellor Cheryl Adams of www.sheryladams.ca

This tactic that MCFD commonly uses, is to hire seemingly independent counsellors (aka professional social engineering spies), to gain the trust of their parent/client for the exclusive purpose of extracting information to be used in court against that parent, for the purpose of winning in court, not reunification or remedial parenting help.

This reprehensible tactic flies in the face of client/counsellor confidentiality, counselling ethics, and the advertised purpose of the exercise to address so-called parenting shortcomings and work towards reunification.

No parental capacity report was commissioned. If it had been, this parent would not have lost her child, because she was an outstanding doting loving parent, according to several community references, all of whom the court, social workers, counsellors, lawyers ignored. What makes this worse, is that later, these two met years later at a grocery store, and Cheryl Adams apologized to mom and said, in essence, "MCFD made me do it". That is just plain sickening.

Parents, get a PCA (Parenting Capacity Assessment)
Parents, skip the counselling and bit the bullet, pay the thousands of dollars needed to hire a PhD Psychologist that is NOT a paid hack of MCFD, and arm yourself with a fair parenting assessment.

Reading the court judgment
Reading the the judgement in this family's case (which, incidentally is not published), the Judge pointed out that no evidence was produced that mom had participated in parenting course. Yet mom obviously did do the work as the involved counsellors testified against her. Even though mom was portrayed as a spouse manipulated by her husband, and supposedly unable to "protect" their child from this supposedly violent dad, he was never charged for abuse neither did he have such a history.

MCFD uses tens of thousands of taxpayer dollars to win at all costs
This would appear to be classic divide-and-conquer strategy by MCFD. Mom is now long since divorced; an event triggered by the intense drama MCFD initiated along with the multi-years of involvement. MCFD won their CCO (which means a Continuing Care Order, termination of parenting and posting the child's image on an adoption website), after years of involvment, tens of thousands of care costs, counsellors, supervised access visits, legal costs for 3 sets of lawyers, and a much longer than usual, month-long trial.


Victoria BC lawyer Jennifer Barrett
(called to the Bar 2004, Firm: Quadra Legal)

In the case of MCFD contracted lawyer Jennifer Barrett of Quadra Legal (she ONLY does MCFD cases), Papa has noted that BC Public Accounts records payments to her firm massively jumped, doubling from $179,276 in 2012 to $407,072 in 2013. This coincides with the unprecedented 30-day trial that a just ONE parent endured in 2013. "Someone" in MCFD approved that massive expense.

Ms. Barrett became a member of the BC Bar in 2004, the year MCFD payments to Quadra began (payments in that year 2004 totaled just $27,583). Currently Ms. Barrett is not registered with the BC Law Society. The only (uncomplimentary) hit on her is listed at http://bit.ly/BarrettRating. MCFD must love her, if she is winning all their cases against parents, who must hate her. In any case, business with MCFD is clearly appears to be a lucrative guaranteed growth enterprise for this individual. Since each parent had a lawyer and legal aid paid this, that is a further undocumented public expense.

The totality of all costs must be tallied up for each MCFD involvment with families so hard questions can be asked as to precisely how all of this is justified. Papa asks, precisely how is it in the public interest to spend hundreds of thousands of taxpayer money on ONE family to win in court? Against a parent who has not been even criminally charged of abuse? A criminal conviction is far cheaper exercise that these ridiculous civil prosecutions where MCFD holds all the cards, time, money, and experts to squish families into oblivion.

I have read that the average cost for a middle class family to raise a child from birth to university is about $100,000. So, I want to see that this massive "investment" in this child has produced an equally unprecedented Einstein that proves that the return far outstrips the cost. How about it, MCFD?

In another case, a parent reported an IDENTICAL exercise orchestrated by MCFD social worker (get name) in New Westminster private company called "Project Parent", where counsellor Judy (get lastname), a counsellor came to the family home, produced reports that the parent was obligated to sign, (essentially to "verify attendance" - which, in reality, was akin to signing a sworn affidavit). Then, after many months when it came to trial, every single one of these reports were entered into MCFD's evidence book. MCFD OMITTED from their evidence book, a fair and balanced PCA (parental capacity assessment) report done in favour of the parent by Dr. Allan Posthuma, that was paid by MCFD ($7,000) happened to be in the parent's favour. MCFD dragged out that case for 18 months (an identical time frame to the J.P. case), their lawyers attended court, and withdrew at the last minute, claiming the "protection concerns" were (magically) alleviated at that point in time.

The moral of the story is, that parents that have been told that "participating" in services will address parenting shortcomings and be seen by the court as the parent accepting help to address "child protection concerns" (as if these allegations were validated, despite awaiting court proceedings to decide this or not), MUST NOT, under ANY CIRCUMSTANCES, provide counsellors with information that CAN and WILL BE USED AGAINST THEM IN COURT.


4 comments:

  1. This is what the MCFD do to good families. I'm a victim of MCFD lies but sadly my children are victims to. I was told do my work jump threw the hoops and I will have my kids home... This was in 2012. A year later Brian Kent MCFD sw in Duncan bc looked over my file and was going to return my kids as there was no concerns. Then sw Laurel Fassett took my case. I was in mediation being told to sign a CCO or never see my kids again....so scared I signed the papers not knowing it was a tactic they use on parent.......
    I work with community services for Cowachain Valley....Helping families.
    I thought MCFD worked on helping families as well instead of ripping them apart...

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  2. I too was told by Laurel Fossett that after my children were taken while I was at work that I had to sign a family plan to see my children. She tricked me it wasn't a family plan I signed, when I finally saw all the paperwork she had fooled me into signing the rights to my children. This is more than a signature made under duress it was obtained through extortion!

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  3. This sw needs to be held accountable for her actions for destroying families that don't deserve it. She will go as far as misleading the courts with untrue facts about a child's death to remove a sibling of this child. ...pretty low ball move... burying a child with a disability isn't a cruel enough punishment, right? why not maliciously remove the other child and deprive the child of his parents for no legitimate reason. This sw is denying this child it's rights to be in the care of extended family instead of foster care. How does this sw sleep at night? I'd feel like shit, destroying families for a salary. Must be real proud.. i am a Healthcare Aide, I can sleep at night knowing I put a smile on a client's face.. their job is to help families not destroy them, the govnt spends way more money on contracting out strangers to look after helpless kids, instead helping families overcome their mistakes. A pretty shitty example to be setting for our children. I want to teach my kids, you make a mistake, own up to it and do what you need to do to prevent it from happening again... gah! Only.. if we could stop paying taxes, do a mcfd budget cuts, maybe some sw wouldn't have jobs anymore.

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  4. Update! This SW is Unreal! Cold hearted, malicious, abuses her authority as she sees fit. She has regards to our childrens feelings or well being. She has no intentions of helping families, only destroy them. I swear this SW gets her jollies off on watching families fall apart. Forcing them into financial debt, watching parents go into depression and causing PSTD. She is totally the definition of 'evil'. She doesn't care about the effect of her actions have on our children. It's cruel and wrong. I feel and fear for families that have been destroyed or are in the process of being destroyed. ❤ don't let these clowns break you down. Parents need to get together and have this corrupted billionaire child kidnapping company shut down.

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