Since 2016, 143 infants have been taken from parents just after birth and placed into foster care by the Child Welfare Service. Almost none of the parents’ complaints have come to light.
Only in one case over the past three years was the Child Welfare Service’s decision to place a newborn child in another home on emergency grounds stopped by the County Council, reports Aftenposten. Subsequently, 78 parents complained against the child welfare service and 72 have been successful. So far this year, 29 newborns are in acute care.
There are currently 30 Norwegian cases pending in the European Court of Human Rights (EMD). Several of them are complaints about the Child Welfare Service placing children into care immediately after they are born . The verdict on one case is expected on Tuesday, writes the newspaper.
The Directorate for Children, Youth and Family (Bufdir) informed Aftenposten that there are no official statistics that indicate the cause of emergency placements of newborns, except the danger to life and health in the short term if the child remains with biological parents.
Law professor Elisabeth Gording Stang at the Oslo Met said there is reason to ask whether the judicial control of the county boards are sound enough. She pointed out that cases where the Child Welfare Service has decided on emergency placement, bypassing the system. She shared several lawyers’ concerns about whether county boards and courts are getting enough information and whether the decision is being assessed against human rights considerations.
“We have to make sure that such emergency decisions have been made for the ‘right’ children,” said Stang.
© NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today