FASD & the Justice System

Re T.F., 2012 ABPC 5 (Lipton J.)

Application for permanent guardianship opposed by father – 10 yo child with FASD – refusal of father to recognize special needs – child doing well in foster home – father could meet physical needs but has weaknesses taking responsibility, managing emotional needs of child and is narcissistic – expert indicated that with children with FASD the quality of parenting required exceeds ‘good enough’, need strong, consistent and well-structured parenting, it needs to be superior - father can build on parenting skills, made improvements, still not that stable or consistent – child is close to father, severing relationship would be detrimental to her well-being – father has potential to grow, but does not demonstrate the capacity for being a superior parent – sporadic attendance at access visits, poor follow up with parenting requirements, unwilling to acknowledge FASD diagnosis, plays fast and loose with the truth – PGO granted, father access to child at discretion of caseworker but no overnight visits.