Monday, March 19th
Seems like this is becoming a habit of mine….writing once a month! Sorry… I’m sure you all understand. We’re just busy living life. :) Things are going well. Jacob’s still healthy and that’s all that matters at this point – and that we’re all together.
We got a letter the first of the month from CPS saying that they were closing out the case and Jacob’s file. Yeah – so I thought, then on the 7th, we found out that DHS filed an appeal. An expedited appeal. Meaning that “Jacob is in urgent need of care” so they’re asking the Court of Appeals to make this decision fast. Just ridiculous! Here’s a copy of what our lawyer, Michael Farris wrote:
Stieler Case Update: Michigan Department of Human Services appeals pro-family decision to Michigan Court of Appeals.
Ken and Erin Stieler are the mom and dad of Jacob—who has been cancer-free since his PET scan in early July. He has had two clean PET scans since then—the most recent in January.
Despite all of this, the Michigan Department of Human Services continue…s to attempt to prosecute this f…amily for medical neglect. If they succeed they will force Jacob to resume chemotherapy despite the fact that the drugs in question are not FDA approved (either for children in general or for this particular cancer). Moreover, these drugs do not promise anything close to a guaranteed cure. And, the FDA requires the drug manufacturers to disclose that these drugs cause new cancers to form, heart disease in children, failure to sexually mature, and many other serious side effects in some cases.
The Marquette County Probate Court has twice ruled against the Department. Yet, the department keeps on fighting against these parents.
Just this afternoon, the Department’s appeal was filed in the Michigan Court of Appeals. The irony is that the Department has alleged that this case should be expedited because the situation is urgent. If it was urgent, why did the Department wait 55 days from the initial hotline call until filing its complaint? Why did the Department and a consulting doctor call two local judges trying to influence them to prosecute the Stielers—despite the fact that such out of court calls are clearly unethical? These calls required the case to be re-assigned twice—wasting another two months. If it was urgent, why did the Department ask for a continuance of the December trial date by almost a month? If it was urgent, when the Department lost why did it seek a motion for rehearing, a step that is rarely granted and which took another two months to resolve? And when they filed this motion for rehearing, why did they wait until the very last day—21 days—before filing the motion? And when it came time to appeal, why did they wait until the 20th day—beating the deadline by a single day?
The Department’s actions prove that they don’t really believe in the medical urgency theory—they only believe in hassling parents that have the courage to tell them “no.”
It’s never-ending! They just can’t take no for an answer! Oh well…Our God is bigger!!!!! :) Who knows how long this could go on for. It would be nice to get on with our lives. On a good note, the sports are done. Well, for awhile anyway. Basketball finished last weekend. Skiing is done too. I know Jacob is sad about the skiing, but the nice weather is making up for it. We are enjoying this gorgeous weather, that’s for sure!
Thanks again for all of your prayers and encouraging words. We feel so blessed! I will do my best to keep you all updated on the appeal. God bless you all! He is such an AWESOME GOD!!!!