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Oregon shows Canada how much they care about kids.

Old 04-20-10, 06:58 PM
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Oregon shows Canada how much they care about kids.

This is wild. I've followed it on the local news.

http://www.katu.com/news/local/91576964.html

PORTLAND, Ore. - A Canadian mother described her fight to free her son from Oregon foster care as “torturous” on Monday in a case that pits the state against federal law and the Hague Convention.

A year and a half ago, Noah Kirkman came to Oregon during summer vacation as a 10-year-old to visit his stepfather in Lane County, and it was there that he was put in protective custody.

Noah’s mother, Lisa, said her son, now 12, was taken because he was not with a person considered a parent even though his stepfather raised him.


“That sounds like something if you’re visiting a country in the Middle East or North Korea or something, but the U.S.? The state of Oregon?” said Lisa Kirkman by Skype from her home in Calgary.

“It’s torturous - like getting your heart ripped out,” she said about the year and a half she’s been separated from her son.

She’s gone on a public campaign to get her son back by lobbying politicians on both sides of the border and by doing interviews.


On one interview with CTV, Kirkman explained what happened in 2008 when she sent Noah to the small town of Oakridge, Ore. with her husband.

“The cops recognized other kids, of course, (but) didn’t recognize my son (and) kept seeing this child who said he’s Canadian,” she said in that interview.

Police said they saw Noah around town several times, trespassing at the city’s industrial park, and sitting alone on a fence. They said after questioning the boy he could not explain who he was staying with and why. When they ran his name, they found a past with Canadian Social Services. They then referred him to the DHS.

His mother said Noah has severe ADHD and other anxiety disorders that kept him from clearly explaining his situation.

“What it literally says on the court order is the reason for keeping Noah is that I abandoned Noah down there, and that I neglected him by sending him down to Oregon to stay with someone who does not have parental authority,” she said in the CTV interview. “John is the only father Noah knows.”

She said Noah had his birth certificate, passport and a note that said his stepfather had permission to care for him.


Kirkman said she believes the real issue is that she’s an outspoken cannabis activist. She was convicted for growing medical marijuana without a permit and was sentenced to ten hours of community service. That conviction was not enough to lose Noah then or his sister now.

“They didn’t take my daughter - my daughter’s seven. Why not send him to my parents or to my sister?” she said in the Skype interview. “It simply just does not make sense to me why my son should be down in the Oregon foster care system taking up a space that could be better used to help a child from Oregon.”

DHS said it is working to return the child to Canada and a hearing date will be set on Tuesday.

Juvenile records in the case are closed and the Department of Human Services doesn’t comment on these types of cases.
This is really an odd case. I'm sure a government agency taking care of health care will be much better.

I get why the police called DHS (similar to Child protective services), but how does this possibly warrant going on for 18 months? They know where the mother is, Canada has checked out her living situation and passed it (by their agency), and the kid is still in the Oregon Foster Child system.

Imagine if another country were holding a citizen of ours from his biological mother. I just can't believe this story. I've searched to see if there is more to it, but there doesn't appear to be much.
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Old 04-20-10, 10:28 PM
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Re: Oregon shows Canada how much they care about kids.

I can't speak for any other state, but in my experience, DHR (our version) has about a 100% track record for making stable situations bad and for doing absolutely nothing to fix bad situations. If I see a bad situation and try to get them to fix it, it's always "there's nothing we can do." But they'll snatch a kid away from good parents for trivial stuff.

It's like they have a flow chart showing how to most effectively screw things up.
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Old 04-20-10, 11:18 PM
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Re: Oregon shows Canada how much they care about kids.

Right now it's a she said, he said..that he can't say anything by law situation.

I've heard DHS horror stories, but I've also heard women I know first hand are unfit mothers try to convince me their tale is one of them.
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Old 04-20-10, 11:43 PM
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Re: Oregon shows Canada how much they care about kids.

So have I. But we do know several things from this story and others I have read. The mother lives in Canada. The boy is a Canadian citizen. Canada has said the home the mother is in passes their test for the child to return. There is no way in which this is Oregon's problem. If the mother is unfit, ship the kid back to the proper Canadian authority and let them handle it.
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Old 04-21-10, 12:47 AM
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Re: Oregon shows Canada how much they care about kids.

I've seen what happens to people raised in Canada. I have to see Liver and Onions 5 days a week, I wouldn't wish that on anyone. Besides, we have pajama bowling parties to give foster kids clothes and beds and shit. Sleep Country USA! Anyone can help a foster child. I dropped off some magazines just last week.
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Old 04-21-10, 09:40 AM
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Re: Oregon shows Canada how much they care about kids.

That article is almost purely based on the word of the mother, so I'm sure there's more to it. But if your 12-year-old is wandering around an industrial park by himself, you aren't exactly mom of the year.
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Old 04-21-10, 09:52 AM
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Re: Oregon shows Canada how much they care about kids.

Originally Posted by Groucho View Post
That article is almost purely based on the word of the mother, so I'm sure there's more to it. But if your 12-year-old is wandering around an industrial park by himself, you aren't exactly mom of the year.
Stepfather of the year. If they live right next to the industrial park, I could easily envision it as not that big of a deal.

Last edited by orangecrush; 04-21-10 at 09:54 AM.
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Old 04-21-10, 09:53 AM
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Re: Oregon shows Canada how much they care about kids.

Originally Posted by CaptainMarvel View Post
I can't speak for any other state, but in my experience, DHR (our version) has about a 100% track record for making stable situations bad and for doing absolutely nothing to fix bad situations. If I see a bad situation and try to get them to fix it, it's always "there's nothing we can do." But they'll snatch a kid away from good parents for trivial stuff.

It's like they have a flow chart showing how to most effectively screw things up.
I feel the same way about CPS here. We are #2 in the nation for number of kids in foster care per capita.
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Old 04-21-10, 12:05 PM
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Re: Oregon shows Canada how much they care about kids.

Originally Posted by Groucho View Post
That article is almost purely based on the word of the mother, so I'm sure there's more to it. But if your 12-year-old is wandering around an industrial park by himself, you aren't exactly mom of the year.
He was visiting his stepfather, who is the only father he has known. The mom sent the boy to Oregon to stay with the father. Maybe that isn't mother of the year material, but he is still a Canadian citizen and should be sent back to Canada.
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Old 04-21-10, 01:20 PM
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Re: Oregon shows Canada how much they care about kids.

It's the 18-months-still-not-resolved that is bizarre to me. MAYBE I'd allow for a couple of days to get paperworked faxed and approved, IDs checked, phone calls made, but anything longer is unneccessary.

If accurate, this scenario is a fucking travesty. People should be fired, lawsuits would be deserved. Just ridiculous in every way.
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Old 04-21-10, 01:54 PM
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Re: Oregon shows Canada how much they care about kids.

Originally Posted by kvrdave View Post
...Imagine if another country were holding a citizen of ours from his biological mother. I just can't believe this story...
It's not that uncommon - look at the kid in Brazil who was being kept from his biological father even though his mother had died (just recently he came back to the US, after something like six years). Or middle eastern dads taking their children to the middle east after a divorce and the US mothers not being able to find their kids again.

In this case, has the mother come to the US to take possession of her son or is she just calling and saying "give him to the stepfather, who doesn't have legal custody of him"? And where is the biological father, is he trying to get custody?
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Old 04-21-10, 02:48 PM
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Re: Oregon shows Canada how much they care about kids.

I'm unclear as to whether he was just visiting his step-dad, or it was a more permanent situation. I'm wondering, was this kid even in school? The above article says he was here for "summer vacation" but the timeline would put him here in September at the earliest, which is after the start of the Canadian school year. Another account I read said he was here for the "holiday season" and he was picked up in November.
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Old 04-21-10, 06:18 PM
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Re: Oregon shows Canada how much they care about kids.



Oregon...Massachusetts...like there's a difference.
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Old 04-21-10, 07:10 PM
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Re: Oregon shows Canada how much they care about kids.

^That was pretty good.
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