Friday, February 21, 2014

Parental Rights- "Social Worker for Every Child" Bill Passes logo
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February 21, 2014
"Social Worker for Every Child" Bill Passes

In Edinburgh yesterday, the Scottish Parliament passed the “Children and Young People (Scotland) Bill” by a vote of 103-0 with 15 abstentions. This legislation, which is specifically intended to fulfill Scotland’s perceived obligations under the United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), includes a provision to assign a specific government worker to every child at birth. These “named persons” will be charged with safeguarding each child’s welfare and with representing the state to the family. Giving a state actor, in place of or alongside parents, responsibility for children is a drastic measure usually reserved for cases of child abuse or neglect – but Scotland has deemed it necessary to guarantee the “best interests” of every child as called for in the CRC.

There is no doubt Scotland’s provision will be praised by the CRC Committee and held up to the rest of the world as an exemplary implementation of the treaty. Nor will it take long for other nations, hungry for the approval of these UN “experts,” to follow in Scotland’s shoes.

Surely such a thing could never happen in America, though. Boston and Edinburgh are separated by 3,000 miles of Atlantic Ocean (and a bit of Scottish soil) – a daunting stretch of ocean which many of our forebears courageously traversed to secure for themselves and their posterity the freedom to raise their families in liberty.

What’s more, our Supreme Court once held that “The statist notion that governmental power should supersede parental authority in all cases because some parents abuse or neglect children is repugnant to American tradition.” Parham v. J.R., 442 U.S. 584 (1979)

Unfortunately, we are not in that America anymore. One need look no further than the latest headlines to find parents right here in America having their decisions overruled without cause by government workers.

Fifteen-year-old Justina Pelletier has been held by the State of Massachusetts for over a year against her wishes, her parents’ judgment, or the advice of her doctors, because of a diagnosis disagreement with Boston Children’s Hospital. Justina, who was diagnosed with Mitochondrial disease (or “mito,” a chromosome disorder that creates a broad range of symptoms), went to BCH in February, 2013, for flu complications. While there, attending physicians rejected her mito diagnosis and removed her from her prescribed regimen, claiming instead that she had a somatoform disorder -- that her problems were all in her head. When her parents disagreed, the hospital called in state actors to remove the girl from her parents’ custody. Although the prior mito diagnosis had been issued by a duly licensed physician at a respected teaching hospital, and although its treatment was effective for keeping her symptoms in check, the hospital accused the parents of medical child abuse for accepting their own doctor’s diagnosis over that of BCH.

Sadly, after a year under BCH treatment for her new diagnosis, it would appear Justina’s “imagination” is growing stronger; she is now wheelchair bound and deteriorating rapidly.

Desperate to save his daughter, Lou Pelletier last week defied a gag order issued by the court and took his story to political talk show host Glenn Beck. Now he has been charged with contempt for speaking up.

The Pelletiers return to Massachusetts family court on Monday (Feb. 24) in hopes that the judge might miraculously return their daughter to their care and let her get the help she needs. A trial date for the contempt charge has not yet been set.

Sadly, stories like this are not rare anymore, and there are more such cases every year. Maryann Godboldo in Detroit. “Baby Sammy” Nikolayev in California. Sarah Hershberger in Ohio. (These stories and more were included in our recent State of Parental Rights in America.)

Parents in America are losing their rights to, well, parent. How long will it be before our children, too, are assigned a social worker for life the moment they are born?

The proposed Parental Rights Amendment can halt this madness. It will erect a barrier around your parental rights that the state cannot violate. (In cases of abuse or neglect, however, the government would retain its rightful authority to intervene.)

And here’s how you can help.

First, if you are not yet receiving our emails, you can sign the petition to support the Parental Rights Amendment at Or donate to continue our efforts at You can also join the growing list of volunteers in your state by signing up at

Second, you can call your congressman and urge him or her to support HJRes. 50, the Parental Rights Amendment, by becoming an official cosponsor. They can contact Martha Van Lieshout in Rep. Mark Meadows’ office to be added to the list (which you can see at You can reach your congressman through the Capitol Switchboard at 202-224-3121 or find their direct contact info by clicking on your state at

Scotland will soon have a state worker assigned for every child, and other nations will no doubt follow. But here’s a better idea: How about a parent for every child? And let’s halt the government at the door!


Michael Ramey
Director of Communications & Research

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