Adrian Cook’s four school-aged children have been banned by the Ministry of Children and Family Development from taking transit unsupervised. (5kids1condo.com)

Dad files Charter challenge after B.C. bans kids from taking transit unsupervised

Adrian Crook is taking his fight to B.C. Supreme Court

A Vancouver father is challenging the province after it told him he couldn’t let his children take transit unsupervised.

Adrian Crook, a single father of five, was told by the Ministry of Children and Family Development in fall 2017 that his four school-aged children could not ride the bus unsupervised. The children ranged in age from seven to 11 years old at the time.

“As a result of their brief investigation, the MCFD informed me that, ‘until the children are 10 years old, they cannot be unsupervised in the community, at home, or on transit,’” Crook wrote in a blog post.

“This was despite the MCFD complimenting my parenting, saying there’d been no negligence and that I ‘went above and beyond’ what they expected any reasonable parent to do when training kids to take transit.”

Crook, an independent candidate for Vancouver city council, launched a Charter challenge Friday.

In it, Crook says he wants the B.C. Supreme Court to quash the decision made by MCFD in 2017 to stop his kids riding the bus unsupervised, on the basis that the ministry’s decision infringed on Crook’s right to make decisions as a parent.

“We seek declarations that the Director exceeded their authority and jurisdiction and that the Director failed to explain how they represented a proportionate balance between my family’s rights and liberties protected by section 7 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, and the Director’s objectives in coming to their decisions,” Crook said.

“We also seek a declaration under section 24 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms that the decisions failed to appropriately weigh an infringement of section 7 of the Charter against the justifications for such infringement and were therefore unreasonable.”

A GoFundMe for Crook’s legal fees has raised more than $41,000 since it was launched in January.

In a statement, MCFD said that it “completely supports building independence in kids” and that it would be “comfortable with children as young as 10 or even younger riding the bus alone if they are ready and capable of doing so.”

However, the province said that “there is no set ministry policy and every circumstance is different.”

The ministry said it would be filing a response to Crook’s petition in “due time.”


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Central Coast Regional District swears in new Board of Directors

There are three new faces representing our region and two returning directors

VIDEO: Black horse signals ‘sign of peace’ for Tsilhqot’in Nation

Justin Trudeau rides black horse provided by Cooper family

Trudeau exonerates hanged war chiefs of 1864 on B.C. Tsilhqot’in title lands

Prime minister rides horseback with Chief Joe Alphonse, TNG Chairman, to Xeni Gwet’in meeting place

B.C. Legions in need of young members to continue aiding veterans into the future

Lest we forget what thousands of men and women did to fight for Canada’s freedoms – but without new membership, many Legion chapters face dwindling numbers

Rain, snowfall warnings in effect across B.C.

B.C.’s Interior set to get hit with snow while the Lower Mainland is expected to see more rain

People flocking to Vancouver Island city to see hundreds of sea lions

Each year the combination of Steller and California sea lions take over Cowichan Bay

Protesters confront Environment Minister in B.C.

Protesters wanting more for killer whales confront Catherine McKenna

Humans reshaping evolutionary history of species around the globe: paper

University of British Columbia researcher had the paper published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society

Toronto ‘carding’ activist Desmond Cole stopped by police in Vancouver

Cole says his experience reveals what daily life is like for black and Indigenous residents

Commercial trucks banned from left lane of Coquihalla

B.C.’s Ministry of Transportation has introduced a new program that hopes to prevent accidents and closures on the Coquihalla Highway.

B.C. on track to record same number of overdose deaths as last year

128 people died of overdoses in September, bringing the total to more than 1,100 so far in 2018

B.C. firefighters rescue horse stuck in mud

‘It happens more often than you’d think,’ says deputy chief

Older B.C. drivers subsidizing younger ones, study finds

ICBC protects higher-risk drivers, pays for testing costs

Canadians more prepared for weather disaster than financial one: poll

RBC recommends people check their bank app as often as the weather app

Most Read