'Youth protection is sometimes used as a weapon by abusive parents,' said lawyer of slain Granby girl's mother
MONTREAL -- Lawyer Valerie Assouline will testify before the Laurent Commission Feb. 27 looking into the youth protection system in Quebec and said she sees violence in the system.
"What I see in youth protection today is violence from the institution towards the children," said Assouline.
She said she sees children removed from their homes regularly without adequate reason.
Assouline represents the mother and grandmother of the seven-year-old Granby girl whose death prompted the inquiry.
Assouline is accusing youth protection of failing not only her client's child, but many other children and parents in Quebec.
Assouline is a divorce lawyer and has seen children removed often without reason.
"Youth protection is sometimes used as a weapon by abusive parents," said Assouline. "I've seen this. I see this every day. I see this all the time."
She said abusive parents can call youth protection and claim parental alienation, which is sometimes used against some parents and affects their parental visit.
Assouline has been posting videos on her Facebook page talking about cases she has come across denouncing abuse of power in the system.
The direct effect on children is clear for the lawyer.
"I see the children are deteriorating," said Assouline. "When you're looking at these pictures, I say, 'how come the DYP and the people involved in these cases don't see what I can see just in a picture?'"
When she testifies at the end of the month, she said she will speak about what she sees and the urgency for changing the system immediately.
"We can't wait until the end of the commission," said Assouline. "It needs to be done today."