An Ohio mother has lost custody of her newborn daughter–over the objections of state social workers–simply because she drank marijuana tea to help alleviate labor pains.
Hollie Sanford gave birth to a healthy baby girl on September 26 at a Cleveland hospital, but a custody hearing was scheduled on less than 24 hours notice when the infant tested positive for a marijuana byproduct.
Ms. Sanford says she drank the tea–instead of taking prescription medication–to treat pain and nausea during her pregnancy. She also says she realizes not everyone may agree with the decision she made:
“If people want to say I’m a terrible parent, that’s their right. I did my research and I felt like what I was doing was safe. I know in my heart that I’m an excellent mother. What happened should not have caused my baby to be taken from me.”
Cuyahoga County Children & Family Services have asked a higher court to overturn a decision made by Juvenile Court Magistrate Eleanore Hilow. Hillow ignored the advice of social workers and ordered the child removed from her parents and placed with a cousin.
It should be noted that Sanford has since taken and passed a second drug test for marijuana.
Additionally, an attorney for the county explained that Sanford used a metabolite of marijuana that was in no way psychoactive, but the magistrate ignored that advice and made sure to note that “it’s still illegal” in Ohio.
Meanwhile, all Sanford and her husband, Daniel, can do is visit their baby girl each day. Sanford remarked:
“She really just wants her mom.”
The state of Ohio will vote today on whether or not to amend the state constitution to allow recreational marijuana use and commercial sale of the drug.
This article was originally published by the same author at LiberalAmerica.org.