Imagine the scenario: a mother giving birth in hospital while the father of their child speeds across town on his motorbike to see their first child enter the world. But in his excitement he loses control of his bike and is fatally wounded. The midwives are informed and draw straws on who will tell mum the good news – that her baby is healthy – the bad news that the baby’s father is dead – and the even worse news that:
BECAUSE THE DAD IS DEAD, MUM IS NOW CONSIDERED TO BE A POTENTIAL THREAT TO HER CHILD, IS NOT LEGALLY A MOTHER AND CANNOT TAKE HER BABY HOME WITH HER!
Can you imagine this happening to a parent in the UK in 2012? You can’t? Well it does.
It happened in the past month to a parent in Wales whose partner died shortly after the birth of their child. The grieving parent was treated like a stranger to the baby, not allowed to take their baby home and the child protection system was invoked.
The reason the parent was considered a threat to their new born baby and not allowed to take the baby was simple – HE IS A MAN!
The hospital did nothing wrong – and by all accounts handled the issue with great professionalism and speed – ensuring the case was brought to court and a temporary order granted allowing him to take the baby home.