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If only CYFS Minister Ruth Dyson had listened earlier…..

Posted by watchingcyfswatchnewzealand on February 18, 2007

Thursday, 15 February 2007

If only CYFS Minister Ruth Dyson had listened earlier…..


My son had a lawyer acting for him in 2004. The lawyer wrote to Social Worker Michelle Wills on 15th July 2004 and in the letter she says that my son was very concerned to hear about his sons behavioural problems and how they were deteriorating, and that my son would like to set up a meeting with her to address the issues.

This meeting was not to be.

One day later, Michelle Wills CYFS report on 16th July 2004, says –

Upon my picking up and taking J to supervised access with his mother, he asked me just out of the blue if he had to continue having access with his father and myself.
He said he has been thinking about it all over the holidays, and has decided that if it’s OK he wants to keep having access with his mother but no longer wants access with his father, or myself.

19th July 2004

Phone call from Michelle Wills, to my son. She left a message asking that my son returns her call to arrange a suitable time to meet.

On Michelle Wills CYFS case note she says –

I haven’t yet told him the purpose of this meeting yet, but would like to discuss his son further {e.g} specifically not wanting access to continue his current arrangements re: my son and myself.

26th July 2004

Meeting with Michelle Wills. At this meeting we were told by her that J did not want to continue having access with us. We had to accept want she was saying but
Michelle Wills did not give us the time to address with her J’s deteriorating behavioural problems he was having at this time.

We had only found out about the major behavioural problems that J was having, after requesting his CYFS files.

We had thought that it was the duty of the Social Worker to inform family members.

After Michelle Wills cancelled our access to J, his behaviours continued to deteriorate.

We got the blame, even though we hadn’t had any contact with him.

We found out that Michelle Wills had made a referral for J for an assessment at Whakatata House on 14th May 2004.

This referral was made before my son had resumed any contact with J as my son had only just arrived back from Australia and the first contact my son had with J was on 24th May 2004.

After this access visit, Michelle Wills had left a message on the answerphone to say how well the access went.

I have put this question to Michelle Wills –

Why did J still have to go to Whakatata House, when you had blamed us for J’s major behavioural problems and had already cancelled our access to J.

J’s first assessment at Whakatata House, was on 10th August 2004.

We have got Whakatata House files and Michelle Wills was present at the first assessment. She sat and listened to CYFS caregivers blatant lies and has since denied that she was even there.

Once again, Michelle Wills was covering up for the caregivers.

Whakatata House were not able to help J as CYFS let the caregivers cancel the sessions even though Whakatata House had left J’s file open for a further 3 months.

J’s behavioural problems still continued to deteriorate. The caregivers had told CYFS that they could not manage J’s behavioural problems and had asked CYFS if J could be referred back to the CYFS therapist, which was granted.

This really suited the caregivers, as the CYFS therapist was on their side.

J’s behavioural problems were still deteriorating.

I am most upset to think that we were not allowed to be involved to go to Whakatatata House to help J.

Whakatata House had told me that I had to get a referral from CYFS.

I told Whakatata House that that would never be because CYFS had been blaming us for J’s major behavioural problems and have not wanted to listen to us over the years.

2nd November 2004

Letter from Honourable Ruth Dyson to me, replying to my letter of 23rd September 2004, and in her letter she says –

I am pleased to report that J”s behaviour is stabilising with the assistance of staff from Whakatata House, and he appears less anxious about being taken away from his caregivers.

Why then, Honourable Ruth Dyson, is J still having therapy today for his behavioural problems under CYFS care, and why was he finally removed out of this CYFS caregivers home after 5 and a half years?

Why did you not want to listen to me when I first wrote to you 23rd September 2004 being very concerned about J’s major behavioural problems and my concerns about the CYFS caregivers, whom J was living with at this time?

Why did you let J suffer for a further 27 months, after I wrote to you 23rd September 2004?

I had always thought Honourable Ruth Dyson that the best interests of any child is the first and paramount consideration, so I was under the impression that this meant the welfare and well-being of our children.

If only you had listened to me.

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