Racine V. Woods Essay

1805 Words Aug 9th, 2012 8 Pages
The following case analysis seeks to examine the Supreme Court’s decisions in Racine v. Woods, [1983] 2 S.C.R. 173, in regard to the legal questions, basis of reasoning, as well as the cultural implications. In order to fully understand the outcomes of this case, it is necessary to briefly review the legal issues that prompted the appellants and respondent to pursue legal action. The initial factor was the apprehension of a six week old infant named Leticia Grace Woods, on October 20th, 1976, by C.A.S. of central Manitoba. Upon removing her from her mother’s custody, in an effort to protect her, she was placed in a foster home as stipulated in the Child Welfare Act, C.C.S.M., c. C80. After several months in foster care, Mrs. Woods’, …show more content…
In determining the best interests of the child, the significance of cultural background and heritage as opposed to bonding abates over time: the’ closer the bond that develops with the prospective adoptive parents the less important the racial element.
The racial element in this case was used by Mrs. Woods as a tool by which she could play into the emotions of mainstream media, in an effort to reach the public. When looking at Mrs. Woods’ actions, specifically her initiation of a media event during her visit with her daughter, one cannot help but view her intentions as misplaced. It is likely that she loved her daughter greatly, but the fact remained that she refused to consider the best interests of her daughter, instead, opting for a media spectacle painting the picture of an oppressed Indian woman, suffering at the hands of the white man, while simultaneously perpetuating the idea of cultural preservation. In spite of this, the issue of variance in equality must also be considered, with regard to Mrs. Woods’ experience. The fact that Mrs. Woods was Indian, with a difficult colonial past, directly correlates to her placement, and treatment by society and the way in which she identified herself. This historic and systemic discrimination is a contributing factor to her substance abuse, broken relationship, lack of responsibility

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