Lev Tahor wins appeal, children won’t be sent to Quebec foster care
A decision made by a London judge will see 13 children from the ultra-Orthodox Jewish sect, Lev Tahor stay in Ontario.
In a written decision Monday afternoon, Justice Linda Templeton overturned a ruling by Justice Stephen Fuerth in Chatham-Kent on Feb. 3. That decision ordered the children back to child services in Quebec.
“The evidence before the court with respect to the treatment of their children by these parents who are the appellants are allegations only,” Templeton says. “No findings of fact have yet been made by a court pursuant to a trial.”
Templeton’s decision stipulates that Chatham-Kent Children’s Service can continue their investigation and protection proceedings. Templeton will allow child services to use evidence from Quebec in their investigation.
“These children have already been found to be in need of protection. To create further upheaval and instability in their lives would most surely have disastrous emotional and psychological ramification for them,” Templeton stated.
The case has been remanded back to an Ontario Court of Justice to determine whether the children need protection. The 13 children were taken into full-time care of the province on Templeton’s order.
“I am satisfied that the rehabilitation that may be necessary for the parents in order to achieve reunification of their families… can be commenced and continued in the current locale,” Templeton stated.
In November, approximately 40 families with the Jewish group left Ste-Agathe-des-Monts, Que., and relocated to Chatham.