Jan 08, 2016 News
– mother claims infant was taken from her
A 15-day-old baby is now in the custody of the Child Care and Protection Agency (CC&PA) after
his mother allegedly tried to sell him to a friend, a CC&PA official said yesterday. However, the mother is claiming that the baby was taken away from her without substantial proof that she is unfit to keep the infant.
The official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said the issue is currently being investigated, but the mother’s allegation has proven to be untrue. The official said that the case was brought to the agency’s attention when the infant was taken to the headquarters by the friend, who claimed that the mother had tried selling the baby to her. At that time the infant was six days old.
“Apparently there was some arrangement between the mother and this woman….but afterward (the mother) changed her mind and wants the child back. We have heard both stories and we have to decide what steps will be taken to ensure that the child is in a safe environment,” the official noted. “Children cannot be simply given away just like that.”
Roberta Browne, 22, of Lot 141 Bagotville, West Bank Demerara, stated that she left her six-day old baby in the care of her friend on December 28, 2015, because she had to go to the hospital for a check-up. She stated that she had asked the woman to keep the infant until she returned, but because the hospital was crowded that day with patients, she left the institution late that night.
She said that she called the woman and asked her to keep the baby for the night and the woman agreed. However, the next day she related that when she called the woman to inform her that she was on her way to collect the child, the woman told her that she could not since the baby was in the custody of the agency.
“She told me that I have to go to the Child Protection place to get my baby and she hung up. When I called back she refused to answer her phone,” Browne said. The next day a welfare officer visited her home to check the environment that the baby dwelling in, she said.
“The thing is I don’t know if she was a welfare officer. They just come to my house and checked it. They didn’t tell me when I would see the child or if my baby is alive or dead…Today (Thursday) the welfare officer come back and tell me that I have to sign for the baby, but I haven’t even seen my son…I didn’t even get a chance to name him,” she lamented.
She stated that the welfare officer informed her that the baby was in the custody of the other woman until the agency finds another home for him.
Browne has since made a report to the Alberttown Police Station. She stated that neither the woman nor the agency has grounds to take her child. “I don’t know why they would take the baby…Maybe they want to make it look like I’m an unfit mother, but I’m not. I take care of all of my children,” she said.
The young mother has two other children—a six-year-old and a one-year-old.
Browne is expected to meet with the agency on Monday to further discuss the matter. The issue is also engaging the attention of the police.
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