11 Nov 2008

Baby would still be alive but for CYF, court told

5:25 pm on 11 November 2008

A woman whose baby died after being removed by Child, Youth and Family says he would still be alive if he had not been taken away.

Louise Martin and her separated husband are seeking damages from Child, Youth and Family, six years after the death of their four-month-old son Patrick.

He died after just two weeks in foster care, in May 2002, but a coroner later cleared the agency.

Giving evidence in a civil case in Auckland District Court against the agency on Tuesday, Ms Martin said that after his birth she suffered post-natal depression and blew out of proportion a call to her husband saying she had shaken the baby and placed her hand on his face.

Mr Martin then notified Maternity Mental Health Services.

The pair are seeking tens of thousands of dollars for the psychiatric and psychological effects they say they have suffered because Child, Youth and Family breached its duty of care.

They also allege two social workers lied and used misleading information in affadavits.

The Martins say duties of care were breached and are critical of the process used to remove the infant from their care.

Child, Youth and Family says it acted in the child's best interests.