An American mother whose baby was taken from her by Norway’s controversial child protective service over minor health issues five years ago has lost her appeal and says that the groundwork is being laid for her son to be forcibly adopted.
Last month, a local county welfare board that handles child protective services cases near her home in Lyngdal, Norway ruled against United States-born mother Amy Jakobsen Bjørnevåg.
Bjørnevåg is seeking to regain custody (or at the very least gain visitation rights) of her son, Tyler, who was taken into custody by Norway’s child protection agency, Barnevernet, when he was just 19 months old in July 2013.
Bjørnevåg, who moved to Norway with her family when was 12 and gave birth Tyler at the age 18, told The Christian Post earlier this year that her son was removed from her home over concern that Tyler wasn’t eating solid foods, weighed about a pound less than he should have and was experiencing a Vitamin B12 deficiency.
As international rights advocates have long spoken out against Norway’s CPS system for being too quick to remove children from their parents over arbitrary reasons, Tyler has not been returned to Bjørnevåg or his father, Kevin, even though five years have passed and he is soon to turn seven.
Having been through years of court battles and appeals to regain custody of her son, Bjørnevåg told CP Monday that she could soon lose her ability to even fight for custody if Tyler’s foster family is successful in its attempt to legally adopt the child.
“This time, I was applying for custody back. If not custody, than at least visitation and parental rights back,” Bjørnevåg explained. “[The welfare board] answered that they wanted for him to be — forced adoption.”
The board, which frequently sides with the CPS agency, also denied Tyler’s father’s plea for custody and visitation. Bjørnevåg said that she plans to again appeal the welfare board’s decision to the local district court.
“[The courts] have stated earlier as well as now that I would not have a bad home for him or have poor care taking skills. There is no issue with that,” she added. “Now, the issue is that he has become so attached to his foster parents that [forced adoption] is the only option available. Since I don’t want him to stay in the foster home and I want him back transferred legally, they are saying that ‘She can’t have any visitation rights because she will try something.'”
Not having seen her son since September 2014, Bjørnevåg states that the administrative court won’t give her visitation because the Barnevernet is afraid she will leave the country with Tyler and return to the United States or go to some other country where citizenship is not required. Bjørnevåg has offered to give up her passport and her U.S. citizenship for her son.
“Their ruling completely sided with the CPS. I lost on all my accounts,” she said. “If the court finds that it is a good idea for forced adoption to take place, they won’t look into if it was even correct reasoning to take away parental rights or for taking him away from our home at all.”
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Source: Christian Post