Saturday, December 25, 2004

Community Editable Site

If you would like to contribute to our site, visit this link.

http://afterfostercare.com/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/HomePage

Monday, November 15, 2004

Case Conference Boots Support Person

During today's case conference in room 23 of the court house in Ottawa at approximately 10:00am, a case conference was held in deciding a CFSA matter.

The C.A.S. Lawyer requested that the Agency Client's support person be removed from the court house and Justice Shefield complied ordering that support person to leave.

I will look into this matter, and report back later. In the Attourney General's web site it states that people in a case conference are allowed to have a support person present.

Can there be a claim made against the CAS for demanding that a support person be removed from a case conference?

Saturday, October 30, 2004

Requests Minister to Initiate a Public Inquiry into death of Jim Malone and CAS Bombing attempt

I would like to make a formal request to the Minister of Children and Family Services for a public inquiry into the death of former CAS Employee Jim Malone of Windsor, Ontario.

I would like to know what drove Jim Malone do execute such a serious act.

John Dunn
Executive Director
613-786-1487
The Foster Care Council of Canada
http://www.afterfostercare.com

Complaint to College on Exec. Dir. CAS Windsor

The following is a letter I sent to the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers, a regulatory body which disciplines it's members for professional misconduct and other infractions. See letter below:

To: Marlene Zagdanzki,
Complaints Department, College of Social Workers And Social Service Workers:

I would like to lodge a complaint of Professional Misconduct with the College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers against Bill Bevan, the Executive Director of the Windsor C.A.S. for the way he verbally and emotionally abused the 14 year old youth who spoke to the media on the background of the truck smashing into the Windsor C.A.S. building incident.

In an interview with the Windsor Star on October 27th 2004 (see attached), Bevan cautioned the public that the youth "needs a lot of guidance and has had a lot of trouble in his lifetime" simply to make the public think this youth is a liar or that he can not be trusted or relied upon as a worthy source of information. Although the identity of this youth was not published, the story can be read by others who know him, or by the youth himself, hence causing emotional harm to the youth.

If Bevan said this to the public, I would hate to imagine what he says about the troubled children and families behind closed doors while making decisions that affect the lives of these people.

If a parent were to verbally and emotionally harm a child, or even
"potentially harm a child" the child could be apprehended. Why is it ok then for the Executive Director of the C.A.S. to hurt this youth and label many other "troubled" youth as unreliable, un-trustworty or liars.


John Dunn
Executive Director
613-786-1487
The Foster Care Council of Canada
http://www.afterfostercare.com

Thursday, October 28, 2004

Windsor - Man Drives Truck Into CAS Building

When you read this, please pay attention to the Executive Director Mr. Bevan as he pretends not to know why this man would do such a thing, and also notice how he procedes to completely discredit a teen in the care of the C.A.S.. He basically is calling the child a liar by giving the child's background as being troubled.

In my eyes, this is Dispicable and displays the culture of superiority within the agency's toward's it's clients. If this is how he feels about kids publicly, imagin how he feels about kids behind closed doors while making serious decisons on "troubled children's and families lives".

Read this quote from Mr. Bevan:

"Bevan said Malone didn't lodge a single complaint before or after his resignation. He also cautioned that the 14-year-old is a teen who "needs a lot of guidance and has had a lot of trouble in his lifetime."

Why else would he mention this other than to discredit the boy's information and try to minimize the situation. Bevan also goes on to state that Mr. Malone never once lodged a complaint before or after his resignation. In their words, this means that Mr. Malone never offically wrote on paper, and followed proper procedure with filing a complaint with the agency for investigation. This does not mean that he did not exchange heated conversations in the past about money or other issues. This is worth a DEEP investigation.

Malone did this as a means of getting the REAL message out to the public because he knew that THIS would get media attention. Mr Malone, like many others, was finally pushed to a snapping point by the Children's Aid Society.


Globe And Mail Article:

CAS rocked by man on suicide mission
Group home operator angry about cuts: Teen. $1.5 million in damage

Kelly Patrick and Craig Pearson
Windsor Star


Wednesday, October 27, 2004



CREDIT: Nick Brancaccio, Star photo
AFTERMATH: Two burnt propane cylinders remain at the scene after a burning Ford pickup truck crashed into the front of the Children's Aid Society building on Riverside Drive East Tuesday. The driver suffered serious burns and was taken to hospital.

A suicidal ex-Children's Aid Society worker who slammed his fiery pickup truck into the agency's headquarters Tuesday wanted to hurt the agency for "dicking around" with money and staff levels at the group residence he used to run, says a teen at the home.

"The story isn't what he did, it's what CAS does every day," said the 14-year-old male, who can't be named because he's a CAS ward. "They dick everyone, every way they can, to save money. Well, they wound up losing $1.5 million -- not to mention me almost losing a friend."

The teen and other sources said the truck's driver was 49-year-old Jim Malone, an ex-contract employee who in September left his job running a CAS group home at 1641 Lincoln Rd.

Around 7:30 a.m. Tuesday, Malone lit a pair of 20-pound propane tanks inside the cab of his blue Ford pickup and sped toward the north facade of the sparkling Riverside Drive East building, said police.

AEROSOL CANS IN TRUCK'S BED

Malone also filled the truck's bed with aerosol spray cans and two five-gallon gas cans. The ensuing blaze caused more than $1.5 million damage.

"Oh, this was intentional," said Windsor Police Staff Sgt. Gerry Corriveau after surveying the wreckage. "He was trying to blow up the building."

Nobody was hurt other than Malone, who suffered second-degree burns to 20 per cent of his body and is listed in stable condition at Hotel-Dieu Grace Hospital. Malone also stabbed himself at some point during the ordeal, police said. "He's got what appears to be a self-inflicted stab wound to the side," said Staff Sgt. Stefan Kowal, the head of the Windsor police arson unit.

Kowal and fire investigator Shawn Boutette said Malone exited the truck after it struck the building. Malone fell to the ground and rolled across the lawn to a flower bed at the building's northeast corner where rescue workers found him. His prosthetic leg was found in the cab of the truck.

Staff Sgt. Ed McNorton said police haven't decided what, if any, criminal charges will be laid against Malone.

Corriveau said only six of the CAS's 325 employees were inside when the pickup crashed through the building's blue glass walls. None was hurt. Corriveau and local CAS executive director Bill Bevan said it appeared Malone hadn't intended to kill or injure any of his former colleagues.

The building's doors open at 9 a.m. and most employees don't arrive until 8:30 a.m, said Bevan, who refused to identify the driver. "This person knew that (the building would be empty)."

"This person was a well-respected employee," added Bevan.

He said he did not know what prompted the attack. "We don't have any early guesses around that. Let's hope the individual survives, and they can tell their story and we can find out why they would ever think to do this."

The Lincoln Road group home Malone previously ran is the only one of its kind in Windsor, said Bevan. Malone ran the residence from the time the CAS began leasing it three years ago and it houses a fluctuating number of teens. The 14-year-old resident, who has lived at the home for "seven or eight months" said three children live there now.

As he smoked a cigarette across the street Tuesday night, the teen described Malone as a "father figure" and "one of the nicest guys I've known." He said Malone was angry about recent CAS cuts to the group home. "When he first signed the contract there was so much money and a set number of (staff) hours, but they kept lowering it and lowering it," the teen said.

Bevan confirmed the CAS had recently revamped the program's funding to a per-child formula. When asked if those changes resulted in the home receiving less cash overall, Bevan said: "I would say that there's some truth to that. He could have received less money depending on how it worked, but he also could have done quite well with what the program provided."

The teen said Malone talked about taking his complaints to the media, but felt no one would listen. However, he said Malone gave no hint of plans to slam a truck into the CAS building. "I knew he wanted to hurt the CAS and get the idea out that they dick people around, but something like this? No."

Bevan said Malone didn't lodge a single complaint before or after his resignation. He also cautioned that the 14-year-old is a teen who "needs a lot of guidance and has had a lot of trouble in his lifetime."

As for CAS headquarters, Boutette said employees could be back in by early next week.

"Most of the damage was caused by the sprinkler system discharging, so we have a lot of interior damage: carpets, desks, people's property, files, computers," Boutette said.

The first floor sustained smoke and water damage, while the upper floors were damaged mostly by smoke. A prominent streak of black stained the exterior wall of blue glass on Riverside Drive, while several windows were busted out.

"The flames were roaring up the front of the building," said Bob Wilson, a maintenance worker who was inside when the crash occurred. "We had a wall of flame. There were flames four storeys high. And there's lots of water damage inside. Computers were soaking wet."

Ontario social services minister Sandra Pupatello, a Windsor MPP, said ministry counsellors were dispatched Tuesday morning to help CAS employees cope.

"It was quite a traumatic event," said Pupatello.

- - -

TEMPORARY OFFICES

Intake services for the CAS will be temporarily located on the first floor of the Cleary Centre. Some CAS workers will be headquartered in Club Alouette. The public can still call the main CAS switchboard at 252-1171.

© The Windsor Star 2004








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Champions For Children Foundation

(This post is being worked on still)

Children have been taken from parents who have physical disabilities and moved into foster homes because their disabilities create a barrier to maintaining the level of tidyness or cleanliness that Child Protection Workers expect of them.

For those parents who are disabled and happen to be on fixed or low incomes, the cost of private house cleaning services is either unattainable. (ie: $60.00/hour)

Publicly funded, non-profit cleaning services are not able to alocate the time required to meet the Children's Aid Society's standards. This puts the children at risk of apprehension, which is a traumatic experience with long-term negative effects for everyone involved, especially the children.

On the Children's Aid Society's own Champions For Children Foundation web site the following quote validates the severity of the long-term negative effects of apprehension on children in care.

"Youth leaving the child welfare system are 12 times more likely to be homeless within a year than other young people leaving home."

Champions For Children Foundation

John Dunn, President of the Foster Care Council of Canada will meet with Barbara MacKinnon, The Children's Aid Society's Executive Director, to suggest the creation of a program which would assist families with disabilities who have had their children apprehended, or who are at risk of having their children apprehended as a result of not being able to meet the Children's Aid Society's expectations on house cleaning to keep their children at home with their family.

If this program is approved, the next step would be to address funding for such a program.

Sunday, October 24, 2004

Ministry Updating CFSA

The Ministry of Children and Youth Services is now in the process of reviewing the CFSA and we need to hold a meeting on this process.

We need as many community members to contact the Ministry and request that they have input into the proposed changes.

I will make a meeting notice:

Thursday, October 21, 2004

London, Ontario Child Protection Worker Breaks Social Work Act

I have reported to the College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers in Ontario that a child protection worker in London Ontario is illegally calling herself a Social Worker when she has has her membership terminated with the College since 2001. I will post the results when they come in.

Gov of Can on foster care

http://www11.sdc.gc.ca/en/cs/sp/socpol/publications/reports/2000-000045/page00.shtml

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

CAS Against Disabled Mom

I have recently become involved in a case where the CAS apprehended a pair of brothers from a mother who is disabled, and the reason given was simply that there was a messsy apartment.

We are presently trying to increase home cleaning services to accomodate the mother in order to get her children back.

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

The Foster Care Council of Canada

Wednessday evening is the CAS Ottawa's Annual General Meeting. Be there, the public are invited. Learn about membership, and get a copy of the Annual Report from the CAS.

Wednesday, September 22, 2004

Community Paper Article

Read the July Issue of the Nepean Weekly which contains a story about us:


Official Complaints Against CAS Launched

COMPLAINT AGAINST OTTAWA C.A.S. STAFF FOR VIOLATION OF 68(1) CFSA

Part I 19 Pages.

Part II 7 Pages.

CWLC Silences Voice Of CAS Clients

August 16-19, 2004

RE: FOSTER CARE ADVOCATE LOCKED OUT OF CHILD WELFARE CONFERENCE

At the age of 33, John Dunn, a former foster child, who was shuffled through thirteen foster homes by the time he was eighteen years of age, has embarked upon a mission to form an organization which will be made up of people whose lives have been directly affected by foster care, providing support to others who are currently involved with child welfare.
When Mr. Dunn heard of a four-day conference being held at the University of Ottawa, which focuses on Resiliency of children in foster care, he made a request to the conference organizers, the Child Welfare League of Canada, to attend as an exhibitor table in order to promote his organization. Due to his low-income status, Mr. Dunn requested permission to waive the regular $100.00 fee.

Initially, Nanci Morrison, a staff member of the Child Welfare League of Canada’s agreed to waive the exhibitor fee and let him attend. She invited Mr. Dunn to come down and sign a terms of agreement form.

The next morning, Mr. Dunn received an email from Mrs. Morrison stating that the invite was no longer in effect, and offered no explanation. Upon calling the Child Welfare League of Canada, Mr. Dunn was informed that the Executive Director of the Child Welfare League of Canada, Peter Dudding had made the decision not to allow Mr. Dunn entry to the conference as an exhibitor because “it would not be beneficial to the conference”.

Invited or not, the Foster Care Council of Canada will attend this conference, outside, to let the hundreds of attendees of this conference know of its’ existence. For more immediate please contact:

John DunnPhone: (613)786-1487

Web Site: www.afterfostercare.com

(Preferred communication)
Email: council "at" afterfostercare.com
On Site at U of Ottawa 16th – 19th, August, 2004
- 30 -

Promoting Resilient Development in Children Receiving Care, August 16-19, 2004I would like to clarify to anyone in attendance at this conference, just why I was there with my display board about The Foster Care Council of Canada.

John Dunn's Response to the conference

To begin with, I am sure that when you attend a conference of this nature, you are almost expecting a few angry birth parents to be protesting or something like this. But I was not there as a protest. I was simply there to raise awareness of a new initiative. After being refused permission to attend as an exhibitor table by Peter Dudding, (CWLC Exec. Dir.) it is now a protest.

A protest of the fact that as a former foster child, who is now trying to join with people affected by foster care and other concerned professionals to do what social work had originally set out to do, which is to empower people to improve their lives etc, a protest to show how militantly Nanci Morrison and Peter Dudding of the Child Welfare League of Canada are willing to go in order to keep a voice of the client silenced.

I have no criminal record, I live in poverty and have ever since 1988 when I "aged out" at 18, after sixteen years in foster care as a crown ward, I have never exhibited violent behavior, and have not even been verbally aggressive. As a matter of fact, I offered to talk to Nanci while she passed me and she simply ignored me saying she was busy, and that we can talk after the conference.

You may have also witnessed her telling the conference staff during Victor Malarek's Banquet talk, to make my friend Jane Scharf and I leave the property, and even forced us to stand on the actual street, when the whole time, all we did was sit silently, holding a sign to let people know about the Foster Care Council of Canada, so that if there were people interested in what we are doing, they could educate themselves through our web site. But Nanci would not have any part of that.

I just wanted to say that this is extremely oppressive behavior on behalf of the Child Welfare League of Canada, and I would hope that you call and register a complaint with them, because I did nothing wrong, other than to be of a lower income bracket, and to be a former Crown ward. Possibly a crime in the eyes of the Child Welfare League of Canada.

I see no reason, and neither should you, for not allowing possibly the only person who could not afford to go, who dropped his pride enough to ask for a fee waiver, to attend as a silent, talk only when spoken to, exhibitor space at a conference of extremely high entrance fees. A conference of such importance, and yet only those who have the money to attend, or connections to get the money could attend, which is not inline with Anti-Oppressive Social Work theory. (like Gary Dumbrill of McMaster teaches)

Thank you for your support to those who approached me, and asked me what I was doing, and to those who would have liked to know, but found out through other means, I appreciate it. And remember, we are not AGAINST child welfare. We are simply for positive changes. And I think we can work together to a certain degree to make that change happen... but it takes people... people with knowlege, experience from both ends.

To register your complaint, or comments on this subject, please contact the Child Welfare League of Canada (small office of only a few including Nanci and Peter.
Telephone: (613)235-4412 Fax: (613)235-7616 E-mail address: info@cwlc.ca

Open Letter to the Child Welfare League of Canada

Ms. Nanci J. Morrison Director of Finance & Administration Child Welfare League of Canada
Dear Ms. Morrison:

This letter is to inform you that the Black and Red Flying Squad is organizing to picket your upcoming conference, Promoting Resilient Development in Children Receiving Care, August 16-19, 2004. The reason we are taking this action is because of the callous and dishonest way that the Child Welfare League of Canada has treated our friend and ally, John Dunn of the Foster Care Council of Canada.

We are aware that on July 20th you agreed to allow John to set up an exhibitor table at your conference, only to have the Child Welfare League's Executive Director, Peter Dudding, force you to break your agreement with him two days later. After initially not even giving Mr. Dunn an explanation for the change of heart by email, over the phone you offered up the excuses that the Foster Care Council of Canada is not a national organization, and that their mission is not beneficial to the subject matter of the conference. You then asserted that the decision to exclude Mr. Dunn from the conference was not debatable. We, at the Black and Red Flying Squad would beg to differ.

The Black and Red Flying Squad formed in 2003 with the purpose of offering solidarity to striking and locked-out workers through picket line support. Although we formed mainly to support labour struggles in the Ottawa-Outaouais region, we are also quite willing to intervene in other cases of oppression and injustice that occur within our communities. Many of us in the flying squad know John Dunn, and are willing to picket your conference on behalf of him and the Foster Care Council of Canada.

If you do not want your conference disturbed in this way, there is a very easy solution. Simply inform Mr. Dunn by no later than noon on Friday, August 13th, that you will honour your original agreement to allow the Foster Care Council of Canada to display an exhibitor table at your Promoting Resilient Development in Children Receiving Care conference, and we will call off our actions. If not, you will be seeing us at your conference next week.

Mr. Dunn can be reached at john@afterfostercare.com or by phone at (613) 228-1352.
Sincerely,The Black and Red Flying Squad
BlackandRed mailing list
BlackandRed@lists.mutualaid.org
http://lists.mutualaid.org/mailman/listinfo/blackandred
free hosting provided by http://www.mutualaid.org/

Sunday, August 01, 2004

Television Appearance

MEDIA: TELEVISION INTERVIEW:
I appeared on Ottawa's NewRO (like City TV) Friday July 30th 2004, at Noon, in order to discuss the Foster Care Council of Canada, and to promote the Meet and Greet on the following Saturday at Inverness Park in Ottawa.

The interview was good, except for my own nervousness and trembling voice. I hate being the centre of attention when it comes to talking! Dave was the host, and he seemed very interested in what we were doing.

EVENT: MEET AND GREET - CANCELLED:
Unfortunately the Saturday Meet and Greet in the Inverness Park (Ottawa) had to be cancelled due to Rain. I will be setting up regular meetings soon in a donut shop or Library in Ottawa soon. Stay tuned. Anyone who can assist me with information regarding a meeting place in Ottawa, or your own town, please contact me at
http://www.afterfostercare.com/contactus.html

WEB SITE UPDATES:
I have initiated a complaint against Pierre Viger, the Director of Professional Standards for not giving a copy of the complaint procedure of the CAS upon request. This is a legal requirement, as stated in section 68(1) of the Child and Family Services Act.

You can download and read the complaints at
http://www.afterfostercare.com/news.html

EMAIL LIST:
I would like to ask anyone on this list if they have ever really looked at all of the features available to us through the lists's home page.
There is a calendar, which members can post events, or special dates, such as birthdays, anniversaries, memorials etc. Use your creativity.

I also would ask that you spread the word about both our web site, and our email list. It is vital that we get as many people on this list as is possible, so that we can initiate more discusssion and answer more questions, or generally get more involvement from those who are members.

KNOWLEGE SHARING:
If you have had your life affected by foster care, please share your knowlege with the list. It is easy. If you have something that you think would be of value to someone else who is experiencing foster care, or family court, post it to
afterfostercare@yahoogroups.com and everyone will get it!


John Dunn

Executive Director
The Foster Care Council of Canada
http://www.afterfostercare.com

Monday, July 12, 2004

Job Descriptions

I have some progress on the request for Job Descriptions. Although the Ottawa C.A.S. has a total ban on any communication with me to all of it's staff and volunteers, I made the request for Job Descriptions to the London Children's Aid Society for Job Descriptions for Social Worker, Child Protection Worker and got them in the mail with no hassels.

The Ottawa C.A.S. claim that their job descriptions are private and confidential from the public.

Friday, June 04, 2004

Recent Work List

Job Descriptions:
I have been trying to obtain job descriptions from the Children's Aid Society of Ottawa so that we can see if a child protection worker is doing the same job as a social worker.

If so, these people could be in a position to be required to obtain a license from the College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers to perform their duties as a "child protection worker".

Projects On The Go
At the moment we have several projects on the go. I have been researching the process for a children's aid society with regards to reporting child abuse against a member of the Children's Aid Society.

So far, it seems that when a member of the staff is accused of abusing a child, emotionally or physically, it is turned into an "internal investigation" rather than investigated through normal procedure.

I have voice messages of calls regarding this on our web site.

Monday, May 03, 2004

Birth Mother's Day

BIRTHMOTHER’S DAY
MAY 8, 2004
FIRST UNITED CHURCH
397 KENT STREET (CORNER OF KENT & FLORENCE)
OTTAWA, ONTARIO
SATURDAY, MAY 8, 2004
7:30 P.M.

BIRTHMOTHER’S DAY SERVICE IS HELD IN RECOGNITION OF WOMEN, WHO, WITH A VERY SPECIAL LOVE, HAVE PLACED THEIR CHILDREN FOR ADOPTION, OR FOR THOSE WHO HAVE HAD THEIR CHILDREN TAKEN FROM THEM BY THE CHILDREN'S AID SOCIETY.

BIRTHMOTHERS ARE MOTHERS WHO ARE OFTEN FORGOTTEN ON THE TRADITIONAL MOTHER’S DAY

ANYONE WHO IS A BIRTHMOTHER OR WHO WISHES TO PAY TRIBUTE TO BIRTHMOTHERS IS WELCOME!

WE ASK THAT YOU COME WITHOUT VERY YOUNG CHILDREN OUT OF RESPECT FOR THOSE WOMEN PRESENT WHO HAVE RECENTLY PLACED CHILDREN FOR ADOPTION OR WHO HAVE HAD THEM TAKEN.

TO CONTACT A BIRTHMOTHER FOR FURTHER INFORMATION,
TELEPHONE: ROBIN (613) 822 7516

COME AND PARTICIPATE IN THIS SERVICE FOR BIRTHMOTHERS

Thursday, April 29, 2004

Access Orders / Reductions

I want to hear from anyone about issues related to Access with the CAS. For example. It seems to me that there is a common theme of the CAS always fighting to reduce slowly but surely parents access visit times from 8 down to 4 hours and similar reductions.

It seems that they slowly over time try to reduce the hours you spend with your child in order to try and "break the bond" then they fight for adoption and "Crown Ward with No Access for the purpose of adoption".

Then, the adoption takes place, and during the probation period of six months in that new adoption something "happens" causing an adoption breakdown and the child returns to foster care again.

This pattern has been showing up so we need to hear from more and more parents out there who can show a trend. The reason I believe for this is funding.

See, if a child gets adopted, the CAS loses in two ways. They lose a foster home, and they lose funding for the child. So there is nothing good for the CAS in actually allowing an adoption to take place. There is no benefit for the CAS in this at all. Only two negatives.

What are your opinions? Please respond by clicking on the title of this message.

Friday, April 16, 2004

CAS Financial Breakdown

I tried calling around today to find out in greater detail, the financial breakdown of the Ottawa CAS's budget. For instance, how much money each year is spent on Legal fees, fighting in court etc.

I contacted Bill Walsh, Director of Financial Services of the Ottawa CAS, who said that the public does not have a right to see such information. He also then told me that I should contact the Ministry of Children and Youth services's Suzan Bahun (Ottawa Regional Office) for more information.

I called the Ministry and spoke with Loraine about this. She then told me I should contact Kathy Neff about this issue. I called Kathy Neff today at 2:04pm to ask for a more detailed financial breakdown of the CAS budget with regards to legal fees incurred by the Agency which have been charged to the Ministry.

Things Improving

I have been invited to act as a support person for a mother who was being visited by the Children's Aid Society, and at the same time, provided this mother with the connections in the community that she required to meet the CAS's concerns.

While members of The Foster Care Council of Canada provided the necessary support to this mother, the CAS investigated, and came to the conclusion that she was doing all that she had to do to meet their demands, and have since closed her file.

I am also invited to attend another meeting soon, which I will, and when the time is appropriate, I will post the information on that case as it becomes available.

Friday, April 02, 2004

Dedication To John Dunn

This is a beautiful poem which was dedicated to me, about my life, and my quest to ensure a higher quality of service to kids in care, from a source who wishes to remain anonymous.

My Monsters

My monsters don't exist in a closet
Or under my bed
I can't hide under the covers
And just play I'm dead

No, my monsters once lived inside me
And they gnawed at me all day
They taunted me with their insults
Cause I was their fated prey

They danced inside my mind
And they lingered in my heart
They knew my innermost secrets
And my innocence they tore apart

No, my monsters once live inside me
And told me not to tell
They told me if I did
That I get sent to hell

They whipped me with fresh scars
Of fear and terror and pain
They induced me with guilt pills
So I could not bear the shame

Now my monsters live

In tall buildings
Behind bullet-proof vanes
My monsters live in houses
With socially approved names

My monsters live in courthouses
Where your life is ironed on papers
My monsters live in mansions
Discussing their latest capers

My monsters live with children
Causing them more grief
I killed my own monsters
But there is still no relief

Yes, my monsters may be
Faded fragments of my past
But I still have my toy sword
Against its sinister grasp

And with it I will wield
A monster of revenge
Against your faulty perception
Of being justice's friend.

Thursday, April 01, 2004

Protest of Jack Pantalone Ottawa

Jack Pantalone, and Ottawa Lawyer, has not been fulfilling his duties to represent his client, a nine year old girl who wishes to remain in contact with her mother. We support Tracy in her upcomming protest against Jack Pantalone in front of his office very soon.

New Tricks

The CAS has delivered yet another blow to Tracy, systematically tryng to break her down, but Tracy will not give up. They have now turned it around somehow to go for no access and this against her child's wishes, and the best interests of the child which are documented on paper. They claim that because they told the nine year old girl who loves her mom very much that she can not see her mother anymore, that giving her back visits again would be confusing to her.

They have been visiting each other already and are very happy with these visits, so the Children's Aid Society telling this nine year old girl that she will not be allowed to see her mother anymore is causing her emotional pain each and every day since Christmas.

Contact Barbara MacKinnon at barbara.mackinnon@casott.on.ca and tell her to stop hurting Tracy's Daughter. Go to speakers corner and mention how terrible it is that a CAS agency which is supposed to help children is actually hurting some and intentionally.

More later...

Tuesday, March 23, 2004

Status

The CAS faxed Tracy telling her they are not going to fight the appeal anymore. We will keep you posted on this. Still could be a bag of tricks hidden in their sleeve. Stay Tuned.

Monday, March 22, 2004

Tracy - Letter To Minister - CFSA Section 23 (1) (2)

From:
The Foster Care Council Of Canada
326 Nepean Street, Ottawa, ON, K1R 5G6
(613) 786-1487
http://www.afterfostercare.com
council@afterfostercare.com

TO:
The Honourable Landon Pearson
The Senate of Canada
Room 210, East Block
Ottawa, Canada
K1A 0A4


Greetings Honourable Landon Pearson.

With your obvious love for children, and your dedication to the implimentation of the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child, I thought you might like to know about the following case. I am sad to bring you this news, but time is of the essence as this case is before the courts at this very moment.

Following, you will read a letter of complaint to the Ministry of Children and Youth Services concerning a nine year old girl, who has pleaded to maintain visits with her natural mother, grandmother, and extended family members, and siblings, while being adopted into her present loving foster home.

To: Kathy Neff:
Program Supervisor
Ministry Of Children and Youth Services
10 Rideau Street
7th Floor
Ottawa, ON

Dear Kathy Neff,

In your letter dated February 25 2004, which was your reply to my original letter where I requested a date for the Ministerrial review of the C.F.S. Act, you stated that according to section 224 (1) (2) of the Child and Family Services Act, it is required that a review of this Act be initiated periodically and that the public be advised when a review under this section begins, and what provisions of this Act are included in the review.

I would like to know if you could inform me as to what method and medium is normally, or will be used to inform the public of this impending review, so that we can activly monitor it, and publish the notice on our web site for the public when it becomes available.

Also in your letter, with respect to my very detailed report of child abuse being perpetrated by Barbarah Mackinnon against nine year old Xxxxx Xxxxxxx, a child under her care, you stated that "It is not appropriate for the Minister of Community and Social Services - Ministry of Children's Services (Now Children and Youth Services) to become involved in the individual case management of a children's aid society."

When in fact, section 23 (1) (2) (3) of the Act state:

Minister's order to cease activity
23. (1) Where the Minister is of the opinion, upon reasonable grounds, that an activity carried on, or the manner of carrying on an activity, in the course of the provision of an approved service is causing or is likely to cause harm to a person's health, safety or welfare, the Minister may by order require the service provider to suspend or cease the activity and may take such other action as the Minister deems to be in the best interests of the persons receiving the approved service.

Notice of proposal
(2) Where the Minister proposes to make an order requiring the suspension or cessation of an activity under subsection (1), the Minister shall serve notice of the proposal and written reasons for it on the service provider, and subsections 22 (3) to (8), except clause (5) (b), apply with necessary modifications.

Where order may be made immediately
(3) Despite subsection (2), the Minister, by notice to the service provider and without a hearing, may require that the service provider immediately suspend or cease the activity where the continuation of the activity is, in the Minister's opinion, an immediate threat to the public interest or to a person's health, safety or welfare and the Minister so states in the notice, with reasons, and thereafter the Minister shall cause a hearing to be held and subsections 22 (3) to (8), except clause (5) (b), apply with necessary modifications. R.S.O. 1990, c. C.11, s. 23.

I want to know, why the Ministry insists on letting this abuse continue by not taking the approprite course of action to invoke Section 23 of the Act in order to protect this child from further abuse. There is no doubt that this child is suffering as it is clearly stated in legally binding affidavits that Ned Jackson, a staff of the C.A.S. caused her to be visibly upset, and to cry when telling her she was not going to see her mother anymore.

We have repeatedly informed both yourself, and the Minister of Children and Family Services Dr. Marie Bountrogianni that the C.A.S. has documentation from their own access supervisors which state how important and beneficial the relationship between the mother and the daughter is to Xxxxxx Xxxxxx as they are already both emotionally bonded to each other.

By invoking Section 23 of the Act, the Ministry could obtain access to those records and all supporting materials.

In your letter, you also stated that we should report our allegations of abuse to the Children's Aid Society, the perpetrators of the abuse, with full knowlege of the fact that it is the very same Children's Aid Society's Executive Director, Barbarah Mackinnon who is ordering this abuse to continue, placeing all subordinate staff at that agency in a position of duress to continue the abuse.

The Ministry is presently in a position of intentional breach of fudiciary duty by not invoking section 23 of the CFS Act, as all levels of the Ministry have been repeatedly informed of this child abuse, and as of yet, have not acted upon these reports.

Further more, the Ministry has been informed of the fact that the Child's Lawyer has also not been representing the best interests of the child, his client, Xxxxxxxx Xxxxxxx, who has clearly and consistantly stated her wishes to remain in contact with her mother, grandmother and extended family members.

Be advised that this letter is going to be widely distributed throughout all levels of government, all legal clinics, printed and delivered to judges, police officers, and to the public at large if no action is taken by March 24 9:00am

Sincerely seeking the best interests of the child,

John Dunn
Executive Director
The Foster Care Council Of Canada
http://www.afterfostercare.com

Saturday, March 20, 2004

Child Advocacy Access Request

Greetings Minister Bountrogianni

I would like to know if the web site could expand it's Child and Family Services Advocacy Office web page to include email addresses of contacts within the Advocacy Department.

The reason being, that sometimes a child feels intimidated to make a call in front of staff in the group home, or other people who might be present.

Using the internet, and having access to an advocate via email is another way for a child to contact the advocate when they find a moment of privacy online.

Adding this email address to the web site, would show your willingness to provide easy acccess to advocacy services when ever it is deemed necessary for the children's personal and emotional safety.

So my question is:

Will you put either a list of email addresses of various child advocates on the web site. Or will you put at least one email address to increase accessability in the best interests of the children under your care.

Thank you
John Dunn
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The reply I recieved was that they have forwarded the request to the appropriate person in the appropriate department. Nothing has been posted yet (May 30 2005)

Tuesday, March 16, 2004

John And God...or lack there-of

This is the text from a letter I wrote to someone about my view on God.

Well, funny thing is, I honestly don't remember praying as a child. I do remember that we went to church in most of the homes because I was with the Catholic CAS, but it was all just so procedure. I never got excited by the singing, I was only embarrased by it. I could never understand what all these people were singing about. (I am talking about when I was around six and up) before that I don't remember much of anything.

So when I put myself back into that little boy's body, and look through my eyes of the day, I just remember feeling nothing really when I was in church. It was as if I were at school. Just .. a taller building. No anger, or hate, or anything, just .. procedural.

I was an alterboy as well. The mom, Cecelia Rick, was the woman who went to the front of the church, and stood there "conducting" the oranist? Or maybe the whole church even with her arms waving about like a conductor.

But it all just never meant anything to me at all. I remember being fascinated with the crucifix story, and how a man could bear so much pain, and how mean people were to this man who did nothing to them, except be good to people and to help others. I remember that. And I remember being fascinated with the whole physical part of nailing someone to a cross. (I am a very scientific person) I would think about how his weight would not tear him off the cross and things like that.

Remember, I am using the eyes and my memory of a child here. This is me at the age of six to nine I am referring to.

So, to me, it was all just very everyday like. Very .. non-awe striking. When I would read lines like "fear god" and all that, I just couldn't fear someone I did not know. It all made no sense to me. This God guy, who was so loving and great, and gave life etc, yet he was to be feared? I was so confused by this. It was just not logical. (Spock ha haha)

When I was an alterboy, maybe age 7-9? I remember only one moment or two now... hm.. just had a flashback... .. but I remember and have always remembered kneeling behind the big desk with the priest talking to the crowd, saying the same thing he said last week, holding up the bread, and saying his schpeal (pleae don't take offense, i am actually in my childhood boy mind here ok? ) and I was so bored. I have always hated repetition. It drives me mad. Even the music I love best is industrial and electronice and electro-acoustic and abstract because it is always changing.. so anyhow, I remember kneeling back there with the little bells in my hand, ready to ring them after such and such a line... then again when he said "x" or "y" I would ring them again.

But I never felt anything inside me that was uplifting. I just knew my knees were sore, and I was embarrased kneeling beside this complete stranger, ringing bells in front of pepole in the church. Everyone was lookkng at me too in this girly white robe. Just thinks like that were going through my head.

I also was baptised by this family when I was seven. Another humiliating experience. There were several people around, probably their extended family, and of course them too, a priest I think, and me in front of what looked like a bird bath. A tall, ceramic podium kind of thing with water in it like a bird bath. I don't rememebr much except him slowly pushing my head down into it, and him pouring water over my four head, and I just thought it was embarassing, and stupid, and kind of felt forced into it. Again, it did not mean anything to me in my soul. It was just a strange and bizzaar experience and I did not feel I had any choice in the matter.

So, those are my early church memories anyhow. I don't remember praying except for that day in my photo, where I was about four or five (see it here) http://www.afterfostercare.com/brothers.html ) when my brother said before they take the picture, pray that we get to go home and live with mom again. So I did the pray symbol clasping the hands, and the picture was taken but that was it. It was more or less just a funny gesture to me when I did it. That is all I can remember feeling was that I was posing for a picture.

I am trying to think if I ever did pray... and I at the moment, I can't remember it. Although I have a sneaking sus... well actually it is a memory I think, ... of kneeling and saying prayer before bed sometimes? But again, only because I ws told to. And it was always Our Father. I had a cool glow in the dark rosary I remember that after I was ten.. but even with that, I remember just counting the beads, hoping to get done. I know this all sounds like me, being cold and mean, but I am actually more emotional today as an adult than I was as a child. I think I was just "off".

I always was good at making friends... you have to be when you move around a lot as you know, but maybe it was because I was so "turned off" or "shut down" that I did not feel or I did not acknowlege my pain even though it was there, .... so maybe because I did not physically feel the pain I was suffering so I did not feel a need to "reach out" to anyone for solace?

This is actually interesting to me and I am kind of just rambling with where ever my brain is taking me here... so maybe because I thought I was not suffering, or I had convinced myself that I was not suffering, as an instinctive protection, (survival skill) maybe that is why I never had those questions of "why"? Or "why me?" And when you have those questions, you hope that someone is listening to you. (don't want to think of yourself as a loonie talking to yourself) so you kind of have this hope that there is someone there to hear you asking "why" or "why me".

I have been thinking again ahead of myself and thought that what I was doing, was only hurting in intervals. After each move, I would hurt after it, but not wanting to hurt, I would shut down. So my yearning or suffering was short lived... sure it was all building up inside me like a shaken pop bottle... but at the time, I just ... made it go away. This in turn, made me think i was not suffering, and I would have to move on with the daily grind of getting to know the rules here, shedules, chores, how to get to know the others guys in the house, who to trust, who not to trust, and how to not get into trouble by breaking any rules by accident such as walking too loud, or what ever.. anyhow that is another issue..

So .. oh hum.. :) I maybe have just answered my own questions of why I have never had a faith of any kind. I was never angry at God, he just did not exist to me.t Because I never said "why me". To me, my life was just moment by moment.. second by second. I never planned ahead, This is where "Hope" come in. To me, Hope is faith as well. You hope that there is a God, or you hope that there is an after life. Without hope, There is no faith.

With my programming of myself, I just never put hope into the equation. It's not like I remember actually saying, "I don't have hope".. it was just not a part of my brain, or my thought pattern. I never... I honestly can't remember, planning ahead. Dreaming about becoming this or that. This sounds so sad to me now when I look back ... (Yes Tracy I am crying now) .... because I see that little boy and I feel so bad for him. But at the time, I did not suffer. I did not KNOW I was suffering I guess I should say. I started in the system at 18 months, so I guess I learned young to just adapt. And don't make plans.

But relating hope to God, I think that if you have hope, you can have God. So to me, it .. they... were both plain and simply non-existant. Sort of like trying to imagine what it would feel like to have a third arm, or a world with eight suns... it is just ... not existant, so I don't know how to feel it.

To me, this is probably why I had no faith in life. Then you add to that the physical world, with nobody ever telling you they love you, or taking time to ask you about yourself, you feelings... it just did not happen. I merely functioned in life. I remember I had problems later in a group home, with a mean father figure guy there, who systematically broke you down over the years (4) and I cried a lot living there, but I think I remember the last time I cried until my twenties.. which signals to me another major shut down.

I remember being in the shower... I was feeling quite alone.. actually before I got into the shower, I was undressing and noticed myself in the mirror.. I think I had just been in trouble for something and was told to have a shower, or it was just my turn, but I remember looking at myself in the mirror, and suddently noticing that I had lighter hair then the rest of my family. (I had met my mom and two sisters when I was ten) and I was also recently separated from my brother who had been with me my whole life.... I remember, thinking that maybe I was not even a part of my own family... maybe the CAS mixed up and matched me up with a family other than my family. Or maybe they just put me into this family... I was sort of numb... and that hollow feeling started to appear in my chest.. then as I got into the shower, and the water was pouring.... I remember just crying my eyes out.

My heart exploded and I cried so hard in the shower where nobody would see me and make fun of me.. or hear me.. that I collapsed into the tub, and just lay on my side, crying in a fetal position.. the water pouring over me...

I lay there, feeling my whole essence slipping out of me..and I just cried and cried and cried until I was so sore, I coudl not cry anymore... and that was the last time I cried for many years...

I think I am finished for now, but will continue to talk later..

John...
(Note to C.A.S.Ottawa Staff / Director) You are doing this exact same thing to Mellissa: Use the College Of Social Workers Code of Ethics Book to advocate for positive change and hurry up..

Friday, March 12, 2004

CAS Still Torturing Child

The C.A.S. still is fighting tooth and nail to keep the McEcherins from adopting the nine year old girl, against the wishes of the girl herself, against the wishes of the mother, and against the wishes of the foster family.

They have gone as far as to intimidate the foster family into thinking they will lose custody of the child because they tell them that Tracy is fighting the adoption. When in reality, she is not fighting the adoption, she is fighting to keep access visits and to have the McEcherins adopt the little girl because they supported open adoption.

The CAS is very sick in what they are doing,... actually Barbara MacKinnon is the one ordering all of this so please if you know the McEcherins in the Ottawa area, tell them that Tracy is fighting for a chance to let them adopt, and the judge even sees the benefit, yet the CAS is trying to maintain status quoe and keep costs down through standardization.

John Dunn
Acting totally independantly on this message board.

Thursday, March 11, 2004

Court Date:



Hello, I'm John Dunn, the Executive Director of The Foster Care Council of Canada. The reason Im giving this announcement today, is because this Friday, March 12th, at 9:30 in the morning, a mother named Tracy will be fighting the C.A.S. simply to ensure that her nine-year old daughter has the chance to be adopted by the loving foster home she's lived in for approximately four years, and to maintain access visits with her.


Almost everyone in this little girl's community support the foster family adopting this little girl. The daughter herself wants to be adopted by this foster family, the foster family wants to adopt her while maintaining access visits, EVEN the access supervisors at the Children's Aid Society have given nothing but positive reports which clearly state how important the relationship between the mother and the daughter is to this little girl.

The Children's Aid Society's Executive Director Barbara Mackinnon, has even rejected, on three different occasions, this foster family's applications to adopt Tracy's daughter, claiming that they are "Too emotionally involved".


The Children's Aid Society's Executive Director, Barbara MacKinnon on the other hand, has to maintain the status quoe, reduce costs associated with maintaining access visits, and, at the same time, fight against a loss of funding from the Ministry should the adoption take place.


The result of Barbara MacKinnon's dilligent efforts in keeping the best interests of the corporation in mind unfortunately conflict with what is in the best interests of the child in this case.


Tracy is fighting against the C.A.S. all on her own without a lawyer present, so please come down and show her your support. If you are wondering what you can do I will explain.


All you have to do, so go to the court at 161 Elgin Street, walk in and find what looks like a bookstore, and ask where Tracy Cain's case is being heard. Then come and meet us in front of that court room before 9:30am. We will wait until the doors open to begin the court case, and together we will all enter the court and sit until the judge enters the room.


The Children's Aid Society Lawyer will probably stand up and request that we all be removed, and the judge will respectfully ask that we all leave the court room as the Act requires that the confidentiality of the child be maintained.


We then quietly, and respectfullly get up, bow or nod to the judge on the way out, and leave quietly.


This is how we show support for Tracy, a mom who is simply fighting for the best interests of her child, against cost saving protocols of a multi-million dollar coroporate giant, the Children's Aid Society.


Once again, that is this Friday morning, the 12th of March 2004, 9:30 am, at 161 Elgin Street, for Tracy Cain. Come in, meet the others, and show some support.


The last court session in February, we had a small crowd of supporters show up which consisted of some very brave people as they feared retaliation from the children's aid society in their own cases, yet it was quite successfull.


Thanks for your time, and come on out to meet the rest of us!


I'm John Dunn, thanks for listening.

Friday, March 05, 2004

I keep forgetting i have this and must use it more often. but here is the latest. I have met with a couple of gentlemen who are interested in funding the foster care council of Canada.

I will keep you up to date on this as it progresses.

Sunday, January 11, 2004

I have been away from this diary for quite a while and thought I should get it going again. Please stay tuned as I will begin again to make updates.