A four month-old girl without a name has been placed for adoption by the Family Court in Leeds.
Two of the parents’ previous children had been removed from their care after a court ruled that they were at risk of sexual harm from the father.
The mother attempted to conceal her latest pregnancy from Leeds City Council. She even checked into a hospital under a false name in order to give birth to the girl, identified in the judgment as ‘A’.
However, the local authority became suspicious and asked the police to carry out a welfare check, during which A was discovered. The council quickly launched legal proceedings and placed the girl into foster care. They then applied for care and placement orders which would allow them to find a new adoptive family for the girl.
As the child had not been given a name, the local authority gave her “an appropriate first name for her to use on a day to day basis”. They claimed that if A was left in her parents’ care she would be in danger of suffering “significant sexual and emotional harm” as her siblings had done.
A’s court-appointed guardian supported the council’s application and believed that “adoption would be the best outcome” to keep her safe.
Her Honour Judge Lynch said that because the parents tried to deceive the local authority about their daughter’s birth and refused to cooperate with officials during the subsequent legal proceedings, she had “no confidence at all that they would work openly with professionals to keep A safe”.
The judge concluded that there was “no realistic prospect of A being returned safely to her parents’ care”, so she made the care and placement orders sought by the local authority.
To read Leeds City Council v The Mother & Ors, click here.
Photo by Quinn Dombrowski via Flickr