A family in Illinois had their baby removed by Child Protective Services when she had minor complications during a home birth.
Ryan and Melissa Light chose to have a home birth and their daughter Ruth Abigail was born on July 21 at home and one of her shoulders got stuck during birth. She was freed and everything seemed fine. When she was a little fussy, they took her into the ER to get checked out and were told that she had some nerve damage from her shoulders being stuck. A few days later, someone filed a complaint citing medical neglect because she was born at home, instead of the recommended c-section for being breech. She was removed from their home and placed in foster care for about a week until she was placed with Melissa's parents by the state.
During this time, they've been able to see her more frequently, but are now just waiting to get their baby back.
I feel that this community can help this family!!! You can write letters to the state office here:

Jeff Terronez
Rock Island County
State's Attorney's Office
...Fourth Floor - Courthouse
210 - 15th Street
Rock Island IL 61201

Please keep your letters respectful so as not to make the situation worse.

You can also join the Facebook group here: http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=133054353404631#!/group.php?gid=133054353404631&v=info

I just saw this posted on a friends' wall today and needed to share with as many people, especially since this is pretty close to home for a lot of us!! I had a home birth and can't imagine something like this happening to my family.

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Wow! This hits home with me too. I had my last 2 at home. I can't imagine this happening. My thoughts go to this family.

Alice Turner
Owner and Doula
unbelieveable! people are so shallow minded i hope everything goes well for the family they made the right choice in having a home birth and should have never had their child taken from them......only in america....
Oh how sad. They are missing all that bonding time. What a screwed up world.
My heart aches for this family.
They will be entitled to a trial and I hope they have good attorneys who will call experts on homebirth to point to all the studies saying it's just as safe!
That is terrible! I'll write and do a blog post too – things like this could happen to any of us.

Is there an update on this? Child Protective should have to pay penalties when they take a baby or child wrongfully, in my opinion. Maybe then they wouldn't do it so often. That's just my opinion, but it's an outrageous abuse of power, just because they can (get away with it). It's child abuse to take a newborn away from its loving parents, studies show (but doubtful any court has held? I do not know). But of course, if we write to the lawyer, we have to be nice. It isn't his fault what child protective services workers have done. And once the machinery of family court gets going, it takes awhile to extricate yourself and your family. Trying to be positive, lol.
I just wrote about this on my blog... http://writeaboutbirth.com/index.php/2010/09/24/illinois-cps-remove....

This case has been making me really angry. I'd love to hear an update, especially because I don't have facebook :).
I think this is a big reason a lot of moms get scared of home births.  It is so sad.  Like they are not doing more damage to that child by taking it away from its mom.  Just doesn't make sense.

Here's an update on this family:

June 8th - Hi everyone! We posted some new pics of Ruth who is our constant joy. She is 10.5 months now and 23 lbs, 29 inches, crawling everywhere and is such a happy baby. Currently she is working on her two top teeth so we are hoping they come in soon. 
It was wonderful to meet everyone at the ICAN conference and thank you for all of your support and encouragment while we were there.  It was such a wonderful experience.
I wanted to give you an update on our court situtation.  We had a three day hearing in April with DCFS and just recieved the determination from the DCFS Judge that they still believe we should remain on thier list with charges of Medical Neglect even though the State of Illinois dropped the case back in January.  It looks like we will now be filing an appeal to DCFS's decision and heading to the next level of court. While DCFS recognized that it was our right to decide to have Ruth at home, they feel that we should have had a doctor present at the birth and that we should have taken Ruth into the hospital to get checked sooner than 8 hours after her birth even though no one present at the birth (10 adults) saw anything that suggested the need for emergency care. I can't go into more detail at this time but I wanted to at least give you a summary of the current situation. 
As this continues to drag on, we are doing well; however, it is a constant drain on our resources, time and energy and we cannot express to you how much your support has meant to us over the last few months. Thank you for all of your thoughts and prayers, please keep them coming.
Melissa, Ryan and Ruth
April 6th - Hi everyone! Ruth is doing great and keeping us hopping with all of her explorations. She is just starting to figure out crawling and settles at the moment for rolling whereever she wants to go. At her last check-up she weighed in at 21 lbs and 27.5 inches. Not bad for 8 months old. She is such a happy baby - she has us totallly spoiled.
To give you an update on our story, we head back to court next week for a trial with DCFS itself. Although the State of Illinois dismissed the case and Ruth is home for good, we still need to follow through with the Appeal process in the administrative court to hopefully clear our name.  Please be praying for us as we head down that path next week with at least two full days of trial scheduled.
If any of you are headed to the ICAN conference this weekend, Ryan, Ruth and I will be attending and would love to get to say hi. Thanks again for all of your support - you cannot imagine how important your thoughts and prayers have been to us through this process.
Melissa, Ryan and Ruth

BTW, I've since had another home birth (April 23), my second at home, third child, and my midwife told me it was PERFECT!! I'm not planning anymore kids, but I always recommend home birth over hospital. So thankful to live in Ontario where it's so widely accepted!

There are no words. This is appalling. My sister who gave birth 3 months ago in a hospital, had her son get his shoulder(s) stuck as he was being delivered & eventually came out fine of course. Oh but since this occured in a hospital there was no talk of taking her baby away if he came back later with an issue due to this.  Come one babies get stuck sometimes, probable been happening since the himan race has been around. Can happen inside or outside of a hospital.  this truly disgusts me. i had my first child in a hospital & plan on having a homebirth the next time around. God willing all goes well & we do not live in that state, so maybe laws are different, but I'd be damned if they tried to take my newborn baby away b/c of a small, normal complication during labor!! So, so wrong. Angers me too. So incredibly sad.  There are no words...... May God Bless this family during this horrifc ordeal. I can't wait to experience a beautiful, natural homebirth : )



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