The verdict was delivered today in two new child welfare cases in the Human Rights Court. But the EMD found no reason to condemn Norway for violating the right to family life this time.
The case is being updated
On Thursday morning, the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) handed down two new judgments in Strasbourg. Norway was this time acquitted of violating the right to family life. In other words, the complaints did not reach them.
Rett24 He was the first to come out with the news of the verdicts.
The two complaints concerned children who had been taken care of by the child welfare service and with whom the parents wanted to meet. The complaints also apply to very little contact with children.
Came to Norway as asylum seekers – was deprived of his son
One case concerns a boy who is now 11 years old. She came to Norway with her parents as asylum seekers in 2012. Her mother is from Bulgaria and her father is from Armenia. Their asylum applications were rejected. They complained to the Board of Immigration Appeals. While living in an asylum reception center, the child welfare service received a report from the police about concern about the father’s violence against the mother while the child was present.
The child welfare service at the asylum reception center was also informed that the child was exposed to violence and that there were many conflicts between the parents. The boy was urgently placed in a blocked direction when he was two and a half years old. Parents were not granted the right to receive visits. The following year, a decision was made to care for him. Later, both parents were acquitted of violence against their son by the district court.
However, the boy was granted a residence permit because he was living in a foster home, while his parents had to leave Norway. The parents then applied for the child’s care to be returned, first to the county administrative board and then to the district court. The boy was then six and a half years old.
The district court’s ruling ended with the denial of repatriation, but the parents were allowed to visit three days a year for four hours. An appeal to the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court was rejected. The parents then chose to appeal the case to the EMD for violation of Article 8.
– Now the boy is 11 years old. Both parents live together in Germany and both have jobs, says their lawyer, Anna Lutina. He is surprised that the court did not find that article 8 had been violated.
– They have a very limited and restrictive union, he says. – Now you need an interpreter at meetings to talk to your child. She will speak with her clients to find out if they want to continue with the case.
Two daughters in care
The second case concerns two girls, who are now 15 and nine years old. Six years ago, the children were admitted to an emergency room and later placed in care due to suspected domestic violence. The message of concern came from the school, and the older one had told the teacher about the fights and violence between the parents and that she was also exposed to violence.
Later, it was decided to take care of both children.
The mother was visited four times a year, four hours each time, with access for the child welfare service to supervise the visit.
The mother’s lawyer, Morten Engesbak, is very surprised that the court has concluded that the right to family life has not been violated in the case. He will familiarize himself with the verdict before commenting further.
The child welfare service is adjusting
The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has criticized Norwegian child welfare in several judgments.
The criticism is that the child welfare service:
- State the goal of reuniting children and parents prematurely.
- Justify and document too bad decisions
- Do very little to maintain parent-child contact
There are many indications that child welfare practice is being adjusted to follow up on EMD rulings, with a greater focus on the goal of reunification.
There are also more children who are reuniting with their parents now than before.
It shows figures that Aftenposten has obtained from the Central Unit for county boards.