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A Christian couple lost custody of their two girls because they did not want to lie and teach them the Easter Bunny was real, a Canadian judge has ruled.
In a ruling for the couple, Justice Andrew Goodman of Ontario’s Superior Court of Justice wrote that the foster children were wrongly taken by Children’s Aid Society from Frances and Derek Baars because of their beliefs about the Easter Bunny and should be returned.
“There is ample evidence to support the fact that the children were removed because the Baars refused to either tell or imply that the Easter Bunny was delivering chocolate to the Baars’ home,” Goodman wrote.
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“It appears that the society would not be satisfied with anything other than confirmation from the Baars that they would lie about the Easter Bunny,” Goodman wrote.
The Children’s Aid Society of Hamilton, Ontario, took the three and four year old girls from the Baars, The National Post reported. The Baars are devout Christians who believe that all lying is a sin — even lies about the Easter Bunny.
Action Harmed Children
Goodman charged that the actions by the government-approved agency could have traumatized the children.
“By taking the children away on such short notice, the Society took that away from them and contributed to the turmoil these children had already faced in their short lives,” Goodman wrote. “As (a CAS case worker) states in one of her case notes, ‘Is it more important to have the Easter Bunny or permanency?’ The Society very clearly chose the Easter Bunny.”
The Baars were willing to celebrate Easter with the girls but not tell them about the Bunny, the BBC reported.
“I am more than satisfied that the society actions interfered substantially with the Baars’ religious beliefs,” Goodman wrote.
Goodman’s judgement will clear the Baars’ names and let them be foster parents in the future.
The CAS is a non-profit organization that oversees foster homes and child welfare for the province in Ontario. The Baars are members of the Reformed Presbyterian Church.
Even the head of the CAS admits his organization went too far.
“I apologize for what the foster parents went through,” Dominic Verticchio, executive director of the Hamilton CAS, told The National Post. “We recognize what our mistakes were.”
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