A baby who was removed from its Mother after a forced caesarean is to be adopted.
The mother, who is an Italian national, was sectioned after suffering “paranoid delusions” while she was on a work training scheme in the UK in December last year.
The then-pregnant 35 year-old woman suffered a panic attack at her hotel and the police were called. Her mother told them that she had not been taking her medication for bipolar disorder. She was detained after suffering “paranoid delusions”.
Her baby, called ‘P’ in case reports, was born via a court-ordered caesarean section during the mother’s subsequent stay at a psychiatric facility, and immediately taken into care by Essex County Council.
The woman’s court ordered caesarean section caused widespread criticism in the press at the end of last year. The move to adopt the child has also been criticised.
However, the council defended their actions, saying that they had “exhausted” all options before pursuing adoption. The judge who approved the move said the mother was “profoundly unwell”.
Sitting at the High Court this week, Sir James Munby, President of the Family Division, ruled that the girl should now be formally adopted by a couple he referred to as “Mr and Mrs X”. The couple have cared for the child since last November.
Sir James Munby explained his decision in his judgement:
“Mr and Mrs X are good and loving people. They are admirably equipped to meet P’s needs now and into the future. P is obviously thriving in their care and doing very well. In all the circumstances, and having regard to the ‘welfare checklist’ in section 1(4) of the [Adoption and Children Act 2002], P’s welfare throughout her life requires – demands – that she be adopted. Nothing else will do.”
Sir James Munby noted that despite criticism of the case from the Italian authorities, there had been no application made to the court on behalf of the Italian mother or her child in opposition to the adoption:
“As of 1 April 2014 the position remained as it had been on 17 December 2013. … no application of any kind had been made on behalf of either the mother or the Italian authorities, whether to the Court of Protection, the Chelmsford County Court or the Family Division, nor had any application been made to the Court of Appeal. In particular, it is to be noted, neither the mother, nor for that matter the father, had made any application in accordance with section 47(5) of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 for leave to oppose the making of an adoption order.”