It’s time to take allegations of abuse seriously

Yet another article on ignoring or disbelieving allegations of abuse. This time there are 5 victims, including a six year old boy.

Oak Bay murder-suicide ‘not inevitable’: children’s watchdog report

Social workers, medical staff, officers from three different police departments, Crown counsel, therapists and lawyers were among those who knew of Sunny Park’s fears. She warned that her estranged husband might kill the boy and pleaded for protection.

Domestic violence was a part of Christian Lee’s all-too-short life. He watched as his father punched his mother in the face and threatened her with a knife.

His mother reached out for help: to police, lawyers, social workers and therapists.

By the time six-year-old Christian’s father slaughtered the boy and his family in September, 2007, there were dozens of professionals who might have recognized the danger – had they only talked to each other.

“Christian’s murder was not inevitable,” concluded Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond, B.C.’s Representative for Children and Youth.

Ms. Turpel-Lafond Thursday released the first report on the Oak Bay murder-suicide that left five dead. She found a safety net with gaping holes and blamed not the many individuals who were connected with the case, but a provincial government that has not co-ordinated domestic violence programs or given teeth to family law.

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4 comments on “It’s time to take allegations of abuse seriously

  1. miss j says:

    1. We need to believe women. How can stereotypes and angry divorced men have more credence than facts/research/homicide data?!

    2. We need to reform family court. Please visit Stop Family Violence for more information. She has a great site. There are groups working on reform; unfortunately, the groups working on fathers rights mostly present opposition and appear to protect fathers rights over women & childrens’ safety – intentionally or not. We need to raise awareness, change current policies (joint custody awarding abusers, friendly-parent policies punishing battered women, the use of psuedo-scientific claims that scapegoat women and further harm children, etc.), get organized, network, and truly seek to have a system that just doenst divy up the assets, but seeks to protect individuals from the domestic terrorism they tried to escape.

  2. Lady Ace says:

    But how?

    In a case I have been working on we have hit brick wall after brick wall–with CPS, law enforcement, and even the family court judge. Even the expensive parental coordinator and the children’s counselor seem to move as slow as molasses. Doctors do not want to get involved, even though by our state law all professionals who report are protected from lawsuits in that it is assumed they acted in good faith when they filed their reports–the plaintiff must prove otherwise. But they still act scared and avoid involvement at all costs.

    By the time these professionals act, the abuse is so bad the child is permanently damaged or dead. Why don’t they put two and two together and dig up the links between the circumstantial evidence and save some kids?

    In our town we suspect a lot of political corruption and we know our abuser has barged into professionals’ offices and been belligerent, demanding, and threatened lawsuits. Are the people we pay to protect children really that spineless?

    We think part of the problem is that they are just “blind” to what is going on–they are not thinking clearly, although they should have been trained to think critically regarding circumstantial evidence. Tim McVeigh was convicted solely on circumstantial evidence–but the prosecutors took the time to tie it all together nicely so a clear picture was produced for the jury.

    If anybody knows what it takes to get CPS, law enforcement, and a judge to act, please post. Our family court judge has written orders that he cannot be bothered to enforce. He just reorders–like that is going to do any good. Do they really not understand the nature of the malevolent personality? The only thing this type seems to understand is a 2 x 4–something our criminal justice system seems reluctant to apply. The end result is that the women and children get it instead–from the abuser.

  3. miss j says:

    I hear you – case after case of judges giving visitation/custody to abusers – it’s got to stop.

  4. justice4mothers says:

    Meara McIntosh of Alberta tried telling the authorities and the courts of the violent nature of her ex and her fear of him harming their 3-year-old son Colton. The court ordered her to send him on visitation with dad, and dad killed him and himself that weekend (Rich Saunders). This happened last year. Canada seems worse because of Father’s Rights Pundits like Barbara Kay, who want to protect dads from evil moms who always make “false claims of abuse.” This protection has to stop and everyone needs to come to the realization that there really are abusive, violent parents out there.

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