Friday, October 16, 2009

Family's second baby taken away because of poor circumstances

By: Kirsten Heilgendorff

TWEET: Should a child be ripped away from its family because the family lives in desperation? To read more, come visit my blog; Cigarettes and Coffee.

According to an article which appeared on News24, a family living in desperate conditions was torn apart after the Tshwane Metro Police along with the Christian Social Board swept in and confiscated their baby boy. The family had already suffered this ordeal nine months earlier when the same thing happened with their baby girl.

The couple, along with the grandmother, presently lives in what used to be a hospital for lepers, the Westfort Leprosarium. It is well known that people taking refuge in this dilapidated building live in dire conditions but do not have a choice in the matter. The article, “The place that God forgot” reiterates this.

I know that in theory, the police were looking out for the wellbeing of the child. It seems reasonable to find that the child will have better care in the custody of social welfare, but what about the family? I don’t think it’s okay for the family to be denied the right to children because they are in a situation where they can’t do anything else to better the life of their child.

Surely, it would make a lot more sense to work with the family in gaining their bearings and starting a new and improved life, rather than simply tearing their family apart and leaving them in desolation? I think that it is the duty of the government to manage and work with such issues, rather than simply solving them in what seems to be a quick fix.