For those not familiar with the Justina Pelletier case, a quick recap:
February 2013- Justina, a normal teenager gets the flu accompanied by severe stomach problems and is unable to eat. Tufts University Hospital refers her to a specialist at Boston Children's Hospital. She never sees the specialist because a resident (fresh out of Medical School) says no, the expert at Tufts is wrong, it's all in her mind and contacts Department of Children and Families. Justina is removed from her home and placed in the custody of DCF- Massachusetts.
February 2013- March 2014- Justina's condition worsens to the point where the once active figure skater is now confined to a wheelchair.
February 2014- a judge once again denies the family's request for Justina to be returned home. Her mother, overcome by the decision is removed from the courtroom on a stretcher by paramedics. The father, frustrated by the system's inability to function properly, violates a gag order the judge previously imposed on the family and goes to the press.
March, April 2014- as word begins to spread, media outlets investigate but the State of Massachusetts and DCF dig in their heels and refuse to release Justina to her parents.
This week Justina's sister reports a troubling incident. While showering, a staffer at the facility Justina is being held in through back the curtain over the shower stall Justina was in. When Justina complained, the staffer ignored her complaints and DCF is denying the incident happened.
I don't know all the facts of this case, but I do know this:
DCF Massachusetts and the judge in this case moved extremely fast when they took custody from the Pelletiers. A metabolic disorders specialist at Tufts University Hospital diagnoses her with a rare condition, an inexperienced doctor disagrees without consulting with the expert the specialist refers her to (or the metabolic disorders specialist at Tufts) and calls her condition "psychological". DCF is called in and they take custody of the child while accusing her parents of "medical child abuse".
What began as (quite probably) an honest disagreement over diagnosis quickly spun out of control like a wildfire. When the February 24th hearing didn't release Justina and her mother left the courthouse in an ambulance, Justina's father, Lou Pelletier had had enough. When he spoke out (in violation of a gag order) the story exploded into the headlines across the country and over the internet. Now it appears that the state is trying to find a gracious way out of a situation where there is none.
It's important to remember Justina is still being held against her and her parents' will by DCF. It is also important to note that there has been no evidence that she ever was abused or neglected by her parents until a doctor decided she was misdiagnosed at Tufts. Until such evidence is provided, I can only conclude Justina has been kidnapped by a welfare system out of control.
There is a Facebook page: "A Miracle for Justina". You can access the "Justice for Justina" website here. People can email the governor from the website. People can email DCF- Massachusetts from their website. I encourage people to contact both and express their disgust at this travesty of justice.