While Ohio fostering and adoption issues have made the news for years, they seem to be more prevalent topics these days. Some courts and states have laws stating every effort should be made to keep the child with biological family unless there is proof of previous harm. Some courts rule child custody should go to the family who can give the most stable home. One foster mother and her husband are fighting for child custody involving two sisters who had been with the couple for 16 months before the state took them away.
The couple began fostering children two years ago and have had 10 children come through their home in that time. They were in the process of adopting the sisters, as that was apparently the wish of the girl’s biological mother. They were not even able to tell the girls goodbye when the state agency came and took the girls to live with a great aunt and uncle in another state. Their biological mother said she has only been able to talk to them over the phone once each week since then, including just a five-minute call on Christmas Day last year.
Because of the experience she has gained, the foster mother has started an advocacy organization for foster children where the biological parents work with the foster parents to stay in the lives of their children. However, this only works as long as it is in the child’s best interests. She is hopeful her work will bring about change within the legal system. The trial to try and return the girls to the place that the foster parents say the girls consider home will take place in the next few weeks.
Some adoptions by foster families seem to go without a hitch but others seem to have problems from the beginning. While legislators stress the focus is on the child when passing laws and making judgments about child custody, each state has its own regulations when deciding where and with whom a child should live. An Ohio attorney can help prospective foster and adoptive families involved in family law proceedings in this state.