The child in question is 9 years old and lived with his grandmother since he was about 8 months old, and his grandmother has had custody since December 2011. In September 2016 there was a custody hearing in which the court ordered shared custody, with a review in December. In making their recommendation to the court CFCR disregarded a professional therapist's evaluation. CFCR did not, and was not required to, submit a professional therapist's evaluation upon which to base their decision.
Item 7 of the September court order reads: "Defendant shall ensure that the child attends any and all extracurricular activities as scheduled and on time."
At the time the child was enrolled in i9 flag football. The i9 season ran 8 weeks. Due to a rain date, the child's mother was responsible for bringing him to the game 3 times. On 2 of those occasions she was 15 minutes late; on the other occasion she kept him home because he had a very dubious "sore throat." Of the other 5 days, the mother failed to attend 3 games, was 1 hour 35 minutes late for another, and was only on time for the last game -- when the review date was close. Translation: The mother never got the child to his game on time and was absent for 53% of the child's playing time.
The court was also concerned with the child's school tardiness when in his mother's care. CFCR misrepresented the number of tardies while in the mother's care during the 3-months between hearings.
Prior to the September hearing, when CFCR asked the child where he preferred to live, he told them he wanted to stay with his grandmother. CFCR recommended permanent custody to the mother.
Then prior to the review hearing CFCR again asked the child where he preferred to live. He told them he wanted to go back and forth. (He told me he knew he would not be allowed to stay with his grandmother.) Again CFCR recommended permanent custody to the mother.
CFCR and the blew all this off and the court rubber-stamped CFCR's recommendation to give the mother full permanent custody.
I wonder what impression it has made on the child now that CFCR failed him twice and the court failed him twice.
CFCR's rationale for placing the child with his mother was that shared custody was causing anxiety for the child (not supported by any professional psychological report) and that the grandparents were spoiling the child (without any specifics). So they felt that the child was better off being removed from a household in which he had been thriving for more than 9 years and putting him in a household that, just 3 months earlier, the court did not find suitable for permanent custody.
After a costly divorce primary custody was awarded to me due in part to my ex-husband's unresolved anger and control issues. I retained custody until July of 2010 when I went to court.
He reported abuse. No one believed him. Few heard the voice of my child.
Only his counselor who meet with him weekly for approximately 10 months heard him. He listened.
I saw the fear... heard the nightmares.
While I HAD to go to court to protect my child, this was probably the biggest mistake I have ever made! In court, the testimony of our counselor, who had 18 years of experience was considered to be unqualified. He was adamant that these accounts about the abuse were consistently the same and continued to surface during his meetings with my son.
Custody was immediately given to my ex-husband.
The Council for Children’s Rights was assigned control of the case.I was ordered to undergo and pay for testing by a forensic psychiatrist. During this time, I was only allowed to see my son every other weekend with a supervisor.
After the evaluations were completed 8 months later, it was found that no intentional alienation had occurred.
The Council for Children’s Rights said that since my son had been with Dad for 8 months, they felt that it would be too traumatic to move him back so they wanted him to stay where he was …. with Dad. So in spite of no wrong doing on my part, My son was not returned to his home of seven years.The hitting accusations were never addressed.
Two months later… Daddy broke up with his girlfriend and moved to yet another county….putting Our child in his 3rd school in 3 years. Upon hearing about this move from my son, my lawyers immediately requested that our case be reevaluated. While I waited for this reevaluation, I had to have my leg amputated and went on disability from my job. The Council of Children’s Rights came to visit me again at my home. I assumed this visit would be related to the most recent violation of the order due to the move. Instead, the meeting was focused on my amputation. I answered multiple questions about my amputation and the medications I had and was taking.Members from the Council for Children’s Rights wanted details about my recovery such as it’s’ impact on my mobility and work attractiveness. I provided the names of my surgeon, my pain management doctor, and my prosthetic doctor.
It's been almost two years now.
I have been denied the opportunity to have joint custody of my son based mainly on my physical disability (Leg amputation).
Basically my judgment/sanity, was questioned because I believed my child. I was accused of alienation. My ex-husband had admitted to me during a conversation that he had hit our son. In fact, he seemed to find it funny that I couldn't prove anything...I only had the "words of a child"
The date of this reevaluation was in August of 2012. Via email, a representative for The Council for Children's Rights specifically stated that my disability and psychological issues were the primary reason used to determine custody.
I am not just someone who has lost custody of my child. I have lost my leg, my confidence, my trust, my independence, and my financial security.
I am now on disability and getting ready to file bankruptcy.
I don’t know what additional discriminatory evidence that may be found embedded in the files held by The Council for Children’s Rights. I have only been privy to a limited amount of information. I don’t know if I have been told all the facts. I don’t know if what I’ve been told is the truth. I do know that “the best interest of the child” gives this organization a wide birth to do pretty much what they want to do. I know that I was and am a good mother. I deserve the right to co parent my child. My physical and or mental issues should not affect how much time I get to spend with my child.
Review from Guidestar