Child brings abuse case

6th October 2000 at 01:00
CANADA

A 10-year-old is suing over abuse she claims to have suffered at the hands of her foster mother.

She has brought the action against the Ottawa-Carleton district school board and the local branch of the Children's Aid Society for failing in their duty to protect her.

According to documents filed in the Superior Court, the foster mother, Cathie Doyle, made her sleep in an airing cupboard and forced her into scalding showers.

The girl, who cannot be named because of her age, claims she could only get food at night when she was able to sneak out of the cupboard.

In a separate criminal case, the police have charged Ms Doyle with "failing to provide the necessities of life."

According to the indicment, Ms Doyle is accused of taping the girl to a high chair, handcuffing her to her bed, locking her into a broom closet and chaining her neck to a railing.

The case against the school board is based on its failure to investigate the child's repeated truancies from school.

Her 1995-6 report card, signed by Lynne McCarney, principal of Christie public school, said the school could not evaluate her progress because she "has unfortunately missed a great deal of her final term".

Ontario state law requires that individuals in positions of trust, such as school officials, report any suspected abuse to the police and the Children's Aid Society.

Denis Boivin, spokesperson for society, refused to comment.


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