Next Priority: Rescue the Truckers' Children
If the CAS gets its hands on those kids, the first thing it will try to do is jab ‘em.
There are reportedly 100 children in Ottawa with their trucker moms and dads, participating in the Freedom Convoy. Ottawa’s deputy police chief Steve Bell has announced that the police have called in the Children’s Aid Society “to make sure the children are all right.”
Among other things, the police are “worried the kids could be put at risk if they were to stage a police operation in the area.” (Obvious solution: Don’t stage a police operation in the area. But so far, police haven’t been taking my advice.)
The CAS is reportedly planning to make a statement today—Wednesday, February 9, 2022.
My two decades of work as a family law lawyer has left me with a distinct lack of respect for Children’s Aid Societies. I’ve seen cases where they have definitely done more harm than good.
If I had kids in Ottawa, I’d do everything in my power to ensure that the CAS doesn’t get its hands on my kids.
The Ontario legislation governing this issue is the Child, Youth and Family Services Act, 2017. It provides in subsection 81(7) that a “child protection worker” may apprehend a child under 16 without a warrant if the worker feels that the child is in need of protection and there would be substantial risk to the child’s health or safety if the worker took the additional time necessary to convince a judge to issue a warrant.
The worker can call for the assistance of police, and can authorize the child to have a medical examination without parental consent.
Subsection 81(13) relieves protection workers and police officers of any personal liability for screwing up so long as they screw up “in good faith”. See the second statutory excerpt, below.
As World War II approached, thousands of Jewish families in Germany sent their young children abroad, in many cases trusting to the kindness of strangers to look after them, rather than risk their fate at the hands of a totalitarian government. Depictions of these events can be read in stories such as Pied Piper by Nevil Shute and The Star and the Shamrock Trilogy by Jean Grainger.
My advice to the truckers who are in Ottawa with their kids: consider making preparations to get your kids out of Ottawa, into the homes of trusted relatives or friends, if you hear the slightest hint in today’s announcement by the CAS that they’re going to come investigating. Write a letter of authorization for your friends to show, indicating that they have temporary care and control of the children while you remain in Ottawa.
Don’t send your kids to anyone you don’t trust—I have also seen custody battles between parents who left their kids with grandparents and then can’t get them back— but give this a lot of thought. A friend or even a new acquaintance may be a better choice than your own family. YOU investigate. Get all the information you think is relevant. Ask for a Vulnerable Sector check (see below) if you have any doubts, although this may take more time than you’ve got. You decide.
I’m not your lawyer and this isn’t legal advice. I think it’s just common sense.