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Mother seeks return of her son after care order

A woman has filed a judicial protest against Aġenzija Appoġġ, pleading for the return of her nine-year-old son who was placed under a care order 13 months ago.

The woman, who is from Msida, said that her son was taken away because of an alleged once-only failure on her part. At the time, she said she was the victim of serious threats and was suffering extreme fear. Yet no care or assistance was offered to her, and the care order imposed for her son destroyed her emotionally.

Access to the boy had then been infrequent and under strict supervision.

The woman said that she had been able to overcome her problems and entered into a stable relationship, but Appogg still refused to lift the care order, on the pretext that the boy would then be living with a couple (his mother and her partner) who were not married.  Yet the same boy (resident in a Home) was often left in the care of foster parents who themselves were not married.

The woman said that she had even ended her relationship so that Appoġġ would have no reason not to lift the care order. Yet the care order was still left in place.

Although the Home had made efforts to ease the anxiety and desperate sadness which the boy was suffering from, his situation had reached a point where he tried to commit suicide several times and was receiving psychiatric help in hospital.

Recently, the woman added, a meeting was held with Appogg with a view to having the boy returned to her, but Appoġġ then decided otherwise on the strength of an anonymous phone call. The woman said she had challenged Appoġġ to investigate the phone call, which, she said, was only meant to destroy her. But no investigation was carried out and instead, her access to the boy was reduced.

The woman said this situation was causing her and her son severe  depression and anxiety.

She said she had warned Appoġġ of legal action several times and had been told that such action would remove any hope of reunion with her son. However she now had no choice and would not allow herself to be intimidated by such threats.

The woman therefore called on Appoġġ and the Minister for Family Affairs to immediately lift the care order and return her son home. She also held the agency and the minister responsible for damages.

Dr Stefano Filletti filed the judicial letter.

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