Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Pregnant Woman's 'Hounded Out' Claim; Social Services Fear for Baby's Safety

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Pregnant Woman's 'Hounded Out' Claim; Social Services Fear for Baby's Safety

Article excerpt

Byline: By Ben Guy

A PREGNANT woman last night said she had been "hounded out" of the region by council bosses who plan to take her child from her within 15 minutes of its birth.

Fran Lyon yesterday left her home in St Hilda's Road, Hexham, after receiving what she described as a "horrific" birth plan for her child from Northumberland County Council social services.

The 22-year-old has been told that her baby must be taken from her as she could potentially suffer from a mental illness that could cause her to harm the infant.

Now, at 32 weeks, she has written to the county council informing them of where she has gone and that she intends to engage with her new local authority, in the Midlands.

Her legal team are due to meet with social services bosses at her new authority in a bid to transfer the case.

Ms Lyon said: "I am really disappointed at having to leave my home and I am really upset with the way this has been handled.

"It is a really sad indictment of a local authority in the way that they have dealt with an expectant mother, who has tried to cooperate, with some of the most extreme measures imaginable."

Ms Lyon said she made her decision to move to the Midlands after receiving a copy of her birth plan from social services earlier this week.

It outlines how the baby girl, who Fran has named Molly, must not be breast-fed and must have contact with her for no more than 10-15 minutes after she is born.

Ms Lyon said: "I have been told that I am not to breast feed my child in case I try to poison her. As far as I am concerned the birth plan is abusive and I will just not stand for it.

"It would leave Molly isolated from anybody who loves her from the first few minutes of her life. It is barbaric and it deprives her of a basic right."

The birth plan orders that two midwives are present at the birth, that the child is removed to foster care "as soon as practically possible" and that police will be asked to intervene if Miss Lyon does not co-operate. …

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