`W' vs. The State of New South Wales
Obstruction of Justice
At a recent Supreme Court hearing of 'W'
vs The State of New South Wales, based on improper consent taking, a negative judgement was handed down regarding whether the claimant could overturn the statute of limitations after 25 years had passed.
This judgement was determined by a Master,
a subsequent Justice in the case
for appeal, and a panel of two judges
in the following argument for a second appeal to try a third time, based entirely on the judicial systems decision to deny
justice, on grounds that the lack of two witnesses directly involved in the adoption, with one having committed suicide in
The other witness, an American who had
been in Australia
on a working holiday for four years, and having taken 800 consents during her employment at the Women’s Hospital Crown Street, could not recall the Plaintiff personally,
and so the state could not defend itself irrespective of the written evidence presented.
The Master in his wisdom chose to entirely
misrepresent the documented evidence presented to the Court, misjudging the date the claimant signed the consent, assuming
the date of signing to have been on day five where
evidence could not show that she signed
before or after being administered the psychotropic drug Pentobarbitone. Whereas she had signed on day six, not day five as
was declared, and the drug had still been in her system at time of signing, declaring very succinctly that stilboestrol was
NOT a sedative (although the Plaintiff had never declared that it was either) to avoid any reference to the actual hypnotic
sedatives produced as evidence, in his judgement.
Ignoring entirely that, according to her
social reports of the time, the mother had intended to keep her baby throughout her pregnancy, looking "confident and elated" by it, and had not seen the social worker at all during the two months period prior to confinement.
Avoiding entirely that it was illegal to transfer a heavily sedated patient from one hospital to another without her consent
or her baby. Avoiding entirely that the adoption practice of forbidding the mother to ever see her own child PRIOR TO ANY
DOCUMENT BEING SIGNED, while she was the sole legal guardian of her baby until a consent had been signed was in law - illegal,
and constitutes abduction.
Accepting the written statement of the
witness for the defence as being accurate and lawful - when it was not. Accepting entirely the witness's explanation that
the entire practice of adoption as described was simply societal mores of the time - which it was not. Although acknowledging
that such practices were routine in The Women’s Hospital, the witness decided in her wisdom to declare in her statement
that such practices were stopped in 1969 - when they were not. And that health authorities had been fully aware of the potential
for psychological harm in forcing a mother to part with her own child.
The witness went on to explain that sometime
after the birth, after being transferred to another hospital (heavily sedated and her baby hidden from her back at Crown Street) the mother would be visited by a social worker
if it was indicated that the child (she
had been forbidden to see of to bond with as per adoption practice) was to be adopted, a district officer would then be called
upon to take the consent. All fully acceptable as okay by the judge.
The witness then went on to explain how
the unmarried mother's medical chart would be marked with the codes:
UB- meaning "unmarried, baby not keeping" or
(BFA meaning "baby for adoption")
- to be used as a routine guide for
labour ward staff. But as the mother had not been made aware of the labour ward protocol and what was to come, and although
hospital staff were forbidden to interact with her, and although the mother herself would be unaware that her medical records
had been marked, it was explained that this code had three functions.(unless the mother had "changed her mind".)
1. Firstly, policy dictated that eye contact between mother and child was
forbidden to prevent bonding.
2. The second was the location of mother and baby postnatally.
3. The third point pertained to the type of medication to be administered to
the unmarried mother.
Irrespective of all the evidence presented,
and irrespective of the fact that the Plaintiff’s accusations about her treatment had been verified as routine practice,
and that the Plaintiff had been a minor and her consent was therefore not legally binding until she turned 21, and that until
two years previously,
the Plaintiff was forbidden under adoption
law to obtain her own documented evidence and did not know she had been sedated nor that she had been transferred to another
hospital until she obtained her records, and that not even the Courts knew that unmarried mothers had any rights, or that
practices had been breaking the law, but
that the then 16 year old mother should have known her rights at the time and should have taken action by 1976, the Judges
in their wisdom decided to prevent the course of justice being applied by refusing to overturn of the statute of limitations
and allow the case to be heard.
Nevertheless, the witness's submitted
written statements proved without a shadow of doubt that hospital practice was a pre-determined set-up.
"In order to better understand the most useful approach
to the unmarried mother, it is necessary to be reminded of
several simple facts regarding such unfortunate human beings.
All unmarried mothers are not delinquents, and certainly not
libertines. How often that are looked upon as a lower order of
human being, as animals who live by their instincts! Nothing is
further from the truth, and it is essential that the whole
community be made aware of the real problem of these girls and
made to realise that they are just human beings like themselves."
The Church and the Unmarried Mother
by a Psychiatrist
Queen Victoria Hospital for Women
as part of hospital staff meeting late 1960's
The Women’s Hospital Crown Street was considered to be the most respected
and progressive hospital in the State. This one hospital was alone responsible for separating between 40,000 to 50,000 babies
from their mothers at birth, which amounted to almost half of all adoptions in NSW
Although I will use the following process
adopted by the Women's Hospital
to outline the confinement process for
unmarried mothers, similar procedures were followed by most hospitals in New
South Wales, although smaller hospitals had no access to hospital annexes.
The Adoption Process
The Hospital Almoner
Although adoption practices were instigated
by the Department of Child Welfare, they could only be implemented by colluding with obstetric divisions of the then Health
Commission of New South Wales.
Keeping in mind that an unmarried mother
under British and human law remains the sole legal guardian of her child until an Adoption Order is made through the Supreme
court and later reduced, with the introduction of the Adoption of Children Act 1965 to the time at which a consent to adoption
is signed, and keeping in mind that under the Adoption of Children Act 1965 legislation had introduced protection clauses
into the Act outlawing independent baby trading racketeers, to protect the unmarried mother and her child from coercion, duress,
or undue influence in encouraging her to part with her child: although slight variations between hospitals occurred, the overall
practices introduced into the treatment of unwed mothers followed a routine procedure commencing with the initial ante-natal
visit, where the young mother at varying degrees of pregnancy would be directed to the hospital almoner's office (renamed
social workers in 1969), where an evaluation of her marital status was conducted, whereupon automatic counselling toward the
promotion of adoption was assumed. Neither warnings against, nor alternatives to adoption were being offered, and any discussion of keeping the baby was actively discouraged.
The mother would then be booked into either
to an unmarried mothers home,
waiting patients, attached to a hospital,
or farmed out as cheap labour to private houses as hired help.
Charitable institutions, hospitals, and
Tresillian homes used heavily pregnant
girls as free labour to save themselves
the cost of paying wages to experienced staff. The young mothers got no respite, and were made to work six days a week until
the day they went into labour. Although the mothers were entitled to financial benefits after six month they usually saw none
of it. except for perhaps $1.00 for bus fare to the obstetrician for their ante-natal checkup.
These homes were double dipping. Not only
were they being provided with free labour in their laundries, kitchens etc to
run their establishments, in return for a lousy bed and food, they were also pocketing the sickness benefits belonging to
the pregnant mothers. In some cases the girls parents were paying for the girls keep on top.
If they were allowed on outings their
bags would be searched for contraband,
(lollies and chocolate), which would be
confiscated from the girls by the staff.
Few, if any homes allowed visitors other
Up at dawn, the mothers would provide
the labour in laundries, serve hospital staff, scrub and polish floors with huge uncontrollable machines that had minds of
their own, putting the mother at risk of miscarrying, knit and crochet doilies
etc to be sold at fetes to raise money for churches and hospitals, and every other menial task that could be found for them.
All in all the mothers lowly position
would continue to be re-enforced through being reminded that they were `bad girls' sluts, and generally treated as a lower
form of life.
Much the same as the unmarried mothers
home but differs in that the pregnant mother can at any time be called up by the medical staff to be used as a specimen for
Mothers who had no indication of being
in labour would be called up to get ready for delivery, where the labour would be induced anything up to two weeks before
due date simply because interns needed to clock up a certain number of inductions or episiotomies in training, and teaching
had to coincide with doctors schedules. Frightened young teenagers already traumatised, would be called up from their room,
made to strip in front of up to ten interns and doctors, where their bodies would be prodded and poked, their nipples squeezed
to show the formation of the areola at certain stages of pregnancy. They would never be spoken to, nor would anyone look at
their faces. As one woman explained:
"I was like
a piece of meat being molested by the medicos"
The third alternative was to obtain employment
through the hospital almoner.
The unmarried mother would be paid $2.00
per week plus room and board in the early 1960's increasing to $10.00 per week by the mid and late 1960's. For this payment
she would be expected to do the entire household duties, look after the employers children, cook, serve when required, beginning
early morning and not stopping until after seven at night. While not all private homes exploited the young mothers or expected
too much from them above basic duties, many were pushed like slaves, belittled in front of company, berated for shoddy jobs
done, sent back and replaced if found to be too young to be competent. Many girls found themselves having to remain hypervigilent
by the constant risk of molestation from the husband of the household, spending their time warding off drunken advances and
molestation whenever the wife turned her back.
The Labour Ward
A living death
They placed a pillow on my
to shield you from my view.
They didn't care, nor realise
that nothing they could do
would ever ease the pain
in ever losing you
A lifetime's passed
They've lied to me!
they promised I'd forget
but as I lie awake at night
A victim of their theft
There’s no-one I can
To help me in my plight
except another pillow
I weep into every night.
In the larger hospitals the birth would
occur in front of as many as forty onlookers cramming to watch the delivery.
Unmarried mothers were not offered any
ante-natal instruction on what to expect during labour even if they had been attending the largest and most respected obstetric
hospitals in the state. Every procedure was designed to punish.
They were never informed of the birthing
procedures, or that they would be forbidden to see their baby's at birth. Nor were they informed of the medication they were
to receive nor were they given their right to decline the medication or procedure. Uninformed and ill-prepared, every aspect
of the process would put them into a deeper state of delirium and trauma.
After preparation mothers would be given
heavy levels of sedation known as lytic cocktails, designed to obliterate feelings.
The cocktails consisted of
psychotropic barbiturates in a combination
of any of the following: Chloral Hydrate, Doriden, Pethidine, Sparine, Largactyl, Morphine, Heroin, Pentobarbitol, Sodium
Amytil, Lithium, and Codeine.
A lower form of life
Many mothers have little if any memory
of the birthing process. For many they not only stole their baby's but also stole their only experience of giving birth. Millions
of taxpayers dollars on the other hand, are spent on perfecting procedures to enable infertile women the opportunity of experiencing
childbirth which is considered to be the natural right of every female human being. That human right was not permitted for
the unmarried mother.
To enable this torture, the medical profession
involved in the adoption process saw unmarried mothers as being a lower form of life, and no better than animals. It wasn't
enough to steal their babies; in annihilating the essence of a woman by treating
mothers like they were having abortions and not giving birth, for a great many women estimated at possibly 60%, they had stolen and violated their only memory and experience of giving life, of procreation.
Irrespective of future counselling, there
is no recovery from the experience of such a birth and of not having ever seen or held one's own flesh and blood to complete
the birthing process.
Further labour ward practices implemented
to prevent eye contact between mother and child, was while the mother was in stirrups, she would be sometimes shackled to
the bed by the wrists (see 1971 4 Corners promotional video submitted) with either bandages, green hospital canvas strips,
or leather straps connected to chains attached to the bed head, a pillow or sheet would be placed on her chest, or held in
front of her face as a screen.
Other tactics were to turn her head away,
dim the lights, stand in her path of view, or blindfold her until the baby had been removed from the labour ward and hidden
somewhere in the hospital.
The cruelty of many nursing staff was
unconscionable behaviour. Mothers in labour were often slapped, scoffed at, called sluts, ignored, left to suffer for longer
than necessary through staff negligence (as just punishment), given no kind word of encouragement for a fine job, with many
giving life in frozen and grief stricken silence.
Some nurses, of course were kind but were
restricted from showing any sympathy.
Procedure at The Women’s hospital
Crown Street, and most
other hospitals, was to top up the already heavily sedated mother with a routine
dose of 200mgms of Sodium Pentobarbitone to knock her out. She would come to some time later and find herself in another hospital
entirely. This was usually Lady Wakehurst in Birrell Street Waverley, or Cannonbury if
she had been a private patient. Her baby remaining at Crown Street. Other, smaller hospitals with no available annexes to dispose of
the mothers, would simply hide the baby from its mother in locked or hidden nurseries, staff rooms, and in linen closets to
prevent the mother from gaining access to her child.
The transfer of the mother was done without
her consent or knowledge and often without letting her parents know she had been removed from Crown Street. So heavily sedated were the mothers that many
did not even know they had been transferred by ambulance until they received their medical records decades after under FOI,
and discovered why they could not find the nursery.
The routine sedation would be to continue
`as required' during the rest of their five or six day confinement, dependent on the state the mother was in. Pentobarb which
remains in the system for up to 56 hours with a half life of 29 hours would be administered nightly, topped up with largactyl
or regular doses of Chloral hydrate throughout the day in a pink syrup. Their drug charts were marked PRN meaning `as required'.
It was not uncommon for mothers to be
used by interns to practice their sewing skills on. With almost every mother subjected to either an episiotomy or simply allowed
to rip. Commonly, `fallen' women have been sewn up in such a way that
leaves a skin tag branding them forever
as scarlet women. So butchered were some that the pain of scar tissue and shame of their disfigurement would prevent them
from having any normal, or future sexual relationship again.
Because of the level of trauma and scarring,
and unable to trust another
doctor again, or any other human being
for that matter, the women, many of whom had been little more than children at the time, have been so ashamed they have been
unable, or unwilling to ask for help to repair the damage, suffering silently, many refuse or avoid pap tests. I am aware
of one mother whose caesarean scar runs from her navel to her pubic area like a train track was told at 15 years old "it will
be her reminder not to be naughty again."
As the phone support facilitator for Origins,
these women have shared their secret with me using their first names only, providing post office box addresses, and so far
refuse to come to meetings.
It has been estimated that as many as
60% of surrendering mothers never conceived again. Whether it was caused by secondary infertility, fear of pregnancy, or physical
damage has not been known. Perhaps it never will.
Because of the lack of ante-natal instruction
provided by hospital staff to help the mother cope with labour, along with being so heavily drugged they had no control over
their bodily function needing to push the baby out, many mothers were ripped and torn to shreds inside and out. A just punishment
for the sins of `wicked' young girls.
Perceptions were also that unmarried mothers
were only charitable cases any way, and deserved no real attention, but that perception was not necessarily true. Many mothers
who had been minors, were covered by their parents HCF private insurance.
The Post Partum Period
A conflict of Interest
Policy then dictated that at some time
after the birth, although she had still been forbidden to see her child, a mother would be visited by a social worker, while
she remained conveniently traumatised and sedated, and if it was then indicated that the baby (she had been forbidden to see
or to bond with), was to be adopted, an unknown district officer from the Department of Child Welfare would then be called
upon to take the mothers consent.
The consent taker, unknown to the mother,
was usually the allotment officer working on behalf of the potential adopters. No mother was asked if she would like to keep
her baby as adoption was automatically assumed.
This intolerable conflict of interest
meant that if the consent wasn't signed her client wouldn't get the baby that has often been earmarked for them prior to birth.
Such shocking conflict of interest was
made even more so as quite a substantial number of district officers/allotment officers, social workers, and others working
in the adoption field were themselves adoptive parents - giving a fair indication of the no win situation the unmarried mother
was in as a result of the self serving nature permeating the institution of adoption.
According to the medical records of The
Women’s Hospital Crown Street, the unmarried mothers chart would be marked with the term `socially cleared' upon having signed a consent, or,
`awaiting social clearance' prior to a consent being taken.
This term was an indication that the consent
had been signed, the mother was socially cleared, and was then free to legally leave the hospital and resume her place in
society. She would be forbidden access to her street clothes until a consent was signed.
If she attempted to discharge herself
from hospital prior to being officially socially cleared, she would be threatened with police arrest for abandoning her baby,
although she could not legally be charged with abandonment unless she had had no contact with her child for a period of twelve
months. Police would be called to remove a persistent mother who tried to get her baby back from the agency within the legal
time. One such mother explains how she had been thrown into the back of a paddy wagon and threatened with jail if she came
back. Police were also used to extract the young fathers from the hospital. Many warned to keep away, and others even bashed
up for good measure.
If she refused to sign, as many did, her
baby would be taken to institutions like Scarba House where it would be kept until the mother could be harassed into signing,
or until the twelve months were up and her consent dispensed with anyway. That the baby was suffering from maternal deprivation
was of little concern. the Mother was not going to get her child at any cost.
Being strictly the social workers' domain,
hospital staff were forbidden to have social interaction with the unmarried mother or discuss adoption matters lest it confuses
her and interferes with the process at hand. Nurses would be threatened with de-registration if caught showing the mother
Can I see my baby?
The Unmarried Mother
in our Society,
chapter 23 - Lakeside
(Shall I look at my
1956 Sarah B. Edlin.
"In a professional agency such as ours...we experimented with permitting
the girl to make her own choice in the matter of seeing or not seeing her
baby. We observed - and so did the adoption agency with whom we work
very closely and with whom we share our thinking - that in the main, the
girl who did not see her baby was much more disturbed after her return
home, than the girl who had seen her child and had returned to Lakeview
with it for a week or two.
It is obvious that in these cases the girl (who refuses to see her baby) is
merely carrying out her own pattern of unreality, and is trying to negate
the whole racking experience by refusing to recognise it's existence. We try
to make this clear to her, and urge her to change her decision. But we
cannot and do not always succeed in making the girl understand the
and conflict she is storing up for herself by not seeing the baby. All we can
do is to exert out fullest efforts to influence her to do so."
Although much evidence was available to
determine that preventing a mother from seeing her child was psychologically harmful to both mother and child,
and although the mother was the sole legal
guardian of her child until she
signed a consent, it became routine practice
Australia-wide to forbid eye
contact between mother and child.....to
Most mothers so psychologically brainwashed
into believing their baby did not
belong to them, did not know they had
a right to ask, were too afraid to ask,
or, did ask to see her child only to be
ignored or berated for her audacity.
Each hospital complied with the arrangement
decided upon by the unmarried mothers home to which they were affiliated.
The Anglican Adoption Agency who controlled
the girls at Carramar Home for Unmarried mothers (the largest private adoption agency during the 1960's), for example, decided
that the mother could see her child at least once, but was forbidden to hold it or feed it, and then only after she had signed
By the early 1970's, she was permitted
to hold her baby for a few minutes, but only whilst heavily guarried by a team of nursing staff or someone else in authority.
I believe this type of control constitutes
inducement to sign a contract.
The Revocation Period
`Under the provision a mother
her maternal instinct so
she needs her offspring back
an application to the court'
Child Welfare 1939
Revocation period introduced.
and under British law and
accordingly, the Child Welfare Act 17, 1939:
The mother was the sole legal guardian
of her child until the adoption order was made through the Supreme Court. This meant that she could legally reclaim her child
from the foster parents at any time prior to the adoption order being made if her circumstances changed. The placement of
a child with adopters was merely an interim placement and was not legally binding.
Most mothers knew nothing of their right
to reclaim their child. Most are still unaware.
Nevertheless, as adopters began to claim
how they could not bond with the child with the threat of its mother returning to reclaim her child, to alleviate any greater
stress than necessary on the adopters, the new Adoption of Children Act would introduce into legislation a clause to reduce
the mothers revocation period to a maximum thirty days. But again many mothers were never informed of the newly introduced
The Adoption of Children Act 1965,
on 7th February 1967
Because of the permanent nature of adoption,
the revocation period was essentially meant to be a cooling off period. Its intention was meant to ensure that the mother
was fully aware of her actions, and if she decided life would be too unbearable without her child she then had time to revoke
her consent. It was also meant to give her time to recover from the birth and get her life in order before she made such a
life altering decision as surrendering her child.
Still in a state of unspeakable trauma
in having been forbidden to see her child
or at best offered a glimpse, and having
been counselled into believing her child did not belong to her, thirty days was hardly enough time to recover from the birth
let alone find employment, accommodation and childcare while still attempting to recover from her experience. Although unbeknown
to her, these facilities had been readily available and she was supposed to be made aware of such help as part of her so-called
Although a mother was meant to be able
to reclaim her child within the 30 day revocation period, few ever managed to access that legal right unless their parents
were willing to support them, even if the mother was already an adult and in her twenties.
Too late most realised that the thirty
day revocation period was being used simply as a trap to ensnare those who tried resist into signing a consent, believing
she had time to get help and her life in order and come back for the child. But with the baby being already allotted, by the
time she returned, they had no intention of giving her child back.
Additionally, because mothers were not
being made aware of how to go about revoking her consent to reclaim their babies within the legally permitted time, she had
to re-contact the staff of adoption agency or hospital who had taken her consent, and in doing so would be routinely obstructed
from revoking, being met with resistance, and hindered from carrying out her
original intention by being told it was all too late and too bad.
Dedicated to my son,
Born: 3rd October 1968
29 years ago, you were taken for adoption,
It wasn't my choice, I was given no option.
Even though they tore us apart
They can never separate you from my heart.
I hope that your parents are loving and kind,
If only I knew, it would sure ease my mind.
As I said to the woman who insisted I sign,
"Give him to strangers, are you out of your mind!"
"To a Doctor or Lawyer", she said you would go,
That was a lie, as I now well know.
30 days she gave me to get you back,
If I could prove to the department, that I didn't lack.
So home I did go and got
a good job,
On a property away from the narrow minded mob.
The people were lovely, they said "you could stay",
With their young children, you would be able to play.
You had your own nursery, and money to spare,
Now all was set, for our lives now to share.
As I rang the hospital on that particular day,
I wasn't prepared for the words they would say.
"Give you your baby?, I would if I could.
But I'm sorry my dear, you have misunderstood.
30 days, or new parents - and you are too late,
I guess you will just have to live with your fate".
29 years of your life I have been unable to share,
But I love you as much as the day I was there!
With my love
your mother -Jeanette
Tampering with Legal
The wording on the documents to be signed, because of it's legal
terminology, was hard to understand for any layman let alone a young
traumatised often sedated mother (often little more than a child herself)
with no law degree and not having the vocabulary to know the meaning of
words like `revoke', `redress', `Master in Equity'.
Request to make arrangements for the adoption
of a child
a) The Request to Make Arrangements form
was meant to be given to the
mother sometime prior to signing a consent. However, this form was ALWAYS
presented to the mother to sign at the same time and on the same day as the
consent form was to be signed. Giving the mother no time to consider the
meaning of signing the consent form.
Tampering with a legal document
b) Although the officially legislated
wording on The Request to make
Arrangements for the Adoption of a Child document explains that:
"I have also been informed and fully understand that I may revoke my
consent for the adoption of my child only by giving notice in writing
to the Master in Equity, Supreme Court, Sydney, before the day on
which an Adoption ORDER is made or before the expiration of thirty
days from the day on which I sign a consent, whichever is the earlier."
the Crown Street Hospital Request forms have conveniently omitted the word ORDER from their documents.
The omission of the word ORDER gives an
entirely different understanding to the meaning of the document.
Not only is it illegal to alter a legal
I believe this `error' was wittingly made
to imply that the `interim' placement of the child with adopters meant that the adoption has already occurred. Whereas the
adopters were only foster parents UNTIL the adoption ORDER was made through the Supreme Court.
An `interim' placement was not legally
binding. The mother could reclaim her child within the 30 day revocation period. She was to have the child returned to her
with 48 hours of revoking her consent.
I believe this error was made to imply
that once the child had been placed with his adopters, it was then too late for the mother to reclaim her child.
I believe submissions to this inquiry
by mothers who tried to revoke within the allowed time and failed, will bear
testimony to my accusation THAT THIS MISINTERPRETATION was used to prevent them from reclaiming their child.
NB By the 1960's the adoption order usually
took around six months to be made through the Supreme Courts, to give the adopters time to adjust to the child and to return
it if the child was deemed to be unsuitable, or if they were unsuitable.
It has become noticeable that the only
exceptions we have discovered to date were mothers whose parents became personally involved in the recovery of the child and
who had supported the mother in the revocation of her consent.
Registering of Birth Certificate
The mother had to sign the birth register
But as mothers were either forbidden to
see their child and/or forbidden to
unwrap the blanket her child was wrapped
in, if she was permitted to see it,
she would not have known if she had had
a boy or girl, or if the child referred to was in fact her child.
The mother had to rely on the honesty
of the case worker to provide the correct information although it is well established that mothers were often told the wrong
sex of the baby and shown the wrong baby after signing a consent to ensure she wouldn't bond with the child.
Many, if not most mothers were unaware
of what they were signing. Many were forbidden to see the wording of any document they were expected to sign.
In many cases the baby's name has been
typed out on the Consent and request forms.
It has to be acknowledged that unless
the baby's name had been written in by hand, many mothers would have signed empty consent forms that would be filled in at
a later date, as it was routine practice to allow the mother to give her baby a name only after the consent was signed, so
it would have been impossible for the case worker to have known to type the baby's name in prior to consent taking - as she
would not have yet known it.
Put simply: if a baby's name has been
typed in, the mother has signed an empty document. I believe this procedure would be illegal.
If an error was found to have been made
in filling out the legal documents, the officer would simply cross it out and fill it in by hand. The officers would also
add additional wording to the meaning of the document if they felt like it.
I believe this to be illegal.
So contemptuous were those in authority
of the unwed mother, even the Supreme Court of New South Wales allowed these tampered with legal documents to be processed.
A Law Unto Themselves
On the one hand the then Minister for
Child Welfare, A.D. Bridges, furiously re-assured Parliament in 1965 how the unmarried mothers rights were being sufficiently
guarded and complied with to get the new Adoption of Children Act 1965 passed through the Courts, and only let slip his personal
contempt towards unmarried mothers once, and knowing Parliament would never endorse such practice, behind the scene, his Department
officers and policy makers seemed to have taken it upon themselves to collude with obstetric hospitals to introduce their
own illicit hospital practices which misrepresented the Act.
Without such collusion between the two
Departments, adoption would have had an entirely different history than it does today.
These new procedures once endorsed - effectively
turned the legal process of adoption into the act of abduction - by implementing procedures of:
1. Systematically denying mothers all
knowledge of their above mentioned
legal rights and options
2. Using both overt and covert methods
of coercion to obtain consents
3. Actually promoting adoption - rather
than following their legal
fiduciary duty of having to warn mothers' of the potential harm such a
course of action may cause them
4. Introducing the violent act of interfering
in the very primal act of
giving birth between a mother and child by snatching newborns from their
mothers wombs prior to the completion of birth while their mother was still in
labour, bound by stirrups, often heavily sedated, and awaiting the
expulsion of the placenta,
5. Introducing the inhuman practice of
forbidding eye contact between
mother and child to supposedly prevent bonding (severing instead the
natural symbiotic bond between mother and child which had already begun
at conception, which culminated in a violent trauma to the psyche of both
mother and child from which neither is ever able to recover).
The measures used to prevent bonding included placing a pillow on the
mothers chest or at her face, holding a sheet up to obstruct her view,
turning lights down or off, blindfolds, turning mothers head away, standing
in way of vision, rushing baby out of labour room immediately upon birth,
using heavy sedation during labour, holding shoulders down to prevent
mother from lifting herself up, pushing mother back down if she sat up,
shackling mother to bedhead as per video.
The consequences of forbidding a mother to see, touch and smell her
child at birth, by the way, keeps the mother suspended forever in a
psychologically pregnant state having never completed the birthing process.
which could account for why an estimated 60% of such mothers never
conceived again, while others fell pregnant soon after the loss of their
baby in a futile attempt to finish giving birth to their lost firstborn and
replace the lost child.
6. Preventing lactation by using the synthetic
hormone DES Stilboestrol,
administered in three time the legal dosage and known since 1971 to be
carcinogenic, and or by the method of breast binding. all without written
consent from the mother. Most mothers would still not know they had been
administered this hormone nor would they be aware of the now known
potential health risks to themselves or their subsequent children in having
been administered Stilboestrol.
7. Sedating mothers during labour with
what was known as lytic cocktails
(used medically to obliterate feelings) consisting of phenobarbitone,
pethidine, sparine, largactyl. Postnatally hypnotic memory altering
barbiturates such Pentobarbitol, Sodium Amytil, Methodone, Heroin, and
Chloral Hydrate, Bombadon, would be administered during the post
confinement period until a consent was taken. The letters PRN or the stamp
of a star noted on the patients medical drug sheet indicated that the listed
drugs could be used "as required."
8. Hiding babies from their own mothers
within the confines of the
hospital, in staff rooms, in linen closets, in locked or hidden nurseries,
denying mothers free access to their own babies- at a time when she was still
the sole legal guardian of her child and could not legally be denied access to
9. Showing mothers the wrong baby after
signing a consent to ensure no
bonding take place
10. Telling mothers their babies had died
at birth - when they had in fact
been adopted. (known in the trade as rapid adoptions - more later)
11. Transporting mothers by ambulance,
whilst heavily sedated to different
hospitals without their babies and without their permission (an act of
kidnap by maternity hospital regulations)
12. Forbidding mothers to see their babies
until they signed a consent
(legally classified as inducement to sign a contract)
Taking consents from mothers prior to or upon birth and post-dating
consenting date to the legally required day five (check Wagga Base
14. Getting Mothers to sign empty documents
and filling them in at a later
15. Forging signatures
16. Shackling mothers to bedhead during
labour with leather straps attached
to chains or using bandages (see video supplied)
17. Forbidding mothers to leave the hospital
until their records were
marked with the term "socially cleared" indicating that they had
consent and could then legally leave the hospital.
18. Forcing mothers to sign a consent
on day five when she could legally
take time to recover from the birth before making a decision. Day five was
only the earliest time her signature could legally be taken.
19. Taking unenforceable (and therefore
invalid) consents from minors -
their consents only becoming valid upon reaching the age of majority
which was 21 years of age - reducing in the early 1970's to 18 years.
20. Not informing mothers of the 30 day
21. Preventing mothers their legal right
of revocation within her legally
permitted time by advising them that their child had already been adopted
when it had only been placed in an interim placement that was not legally
22. Not providing professional counselling
facilities either prior to
during or after confinement.
23. Employing non-skilled and non-licensed
staff to conduct legal
transactions, prepare legal documents and interview unmarried mothers
without knowing the law. In trying to get the heat off their profession social
workers now tell us that as many as 80% of people working in the adoption
industry were non-professionals.
24. Expecting young unskilled mothers
to sign legal documents without an
adult advocate present, and without her understanding the legal meaning or
interpretations of the document she is signing.
25. Not advising young mothers of the
permanent nature of adoption. Some
young mothers believed that adoption meant that an adult would help her to
raise her child, that she would only be giving up her parental rights.
Many young mothers had no idea that they would never see their child
again until they contacted the agency, or went to get their baby upon
leaving the hospital after signing.
26. Misrepresenting the more recent open
adoption system where the girl would
be promised open access to her child but would not warn the mother that
the adopting parents of her child were under no duty to comply with any
promises they made to her in order to acquire her child.
27. Lying to mothers since the mid to
late 1970's, to get them to sign a consent
by telling them they will have open access to their child, that adoption is
not closed like it once was, when open adoption is still not legislated upon
through parliament in 1998.
This was adoption
It must be made very clear that until
1967 two thirds of all adoption arrangements were
carried out by the state government agencies. The other third were made up of what was known as independent baby traders who
were ultimately outlawed when the state took over control of all adoptions in Australia in 1967 by licensing only reputable agencies
to arrange adoptions.
We are not speaking of those privately
arranged baby traders, although they are included. We are speaking of the abuses carried out by the licensed adoption agencies
and the hospitals to which they were associated.
Which ever way it is viewed, a mother
cannot be denied her legally available
options to enable her to make a free and
informed decision, be forbidden to see or have eye contact with her own child, have her baby hidden from her and remain heavily
sedated until her signature can be taken to make it all look so legal, and not call it abduction.