Approximately three months ago Brian Jacques – a retired Canadian Auto Workers union local 127 worker experienced the heartbreak of being denied access to his grandchildren. Brian located CANGRANDS and has been working with us as well as with a group called Not All Dads Are Deadbeats to find out what changes need to happen for the province to allow grandparents’ rights.

A Grandparents’ Rights seminar was hosted by the CAW in Chatham Ontario on January 27 which saw approximately 75 folks attend. Many of the crowd were heartbroken denied access grandparents while others were kinship care giving families plus the brothers and sisters of the Union 127 show up with their support. By the end of the evening it was clear that there is a real need for increased rights for Grandparents with regard to access and involvement with their grandchildren. Far too often Grandparents face difficulties when seeking access to their own family member and often need support as well as some practical solutions to help overcome these hurdles. The event also promoted Bill 33 which is an amendment to the Children’s Law Reform Act that recognizes the role of Grandparents and their right to proper access of Grandchildren. Our plea is to get a fourth bill presented and for this one to actually past its third and final reading instead of being tabled as the pass bills have been. Guest speakers included: CAW Local 127 President Aaron Neaves, Mike McGilvery – Employee Assistance Representative, as well as Brian Jacues – talked of his experience and heartbreak of being denied access to his grandchildren. Dave Flook of the Not All Dads are Deadbeats also gave many stats as well as his story of trying to be an involved father in his daughters life. You can watch this seminar at his website: Betty Cornelius – Founder of CANGRANDS NATIONAL KINSHIP ended the evening with a variety of tales of the heartache of several denied families she knows and the struggle of 10 year and trying to get a Grandparent Bill passed. Betty touched on the conference and camp which CANGRANDS host each year as well as talked briefly on the stories related to patches from the CANGRANDS Hearts N Hands Quilt which can be seen at: In all the evening was a GRAND success and we look forward to working with the local 127 CAW to strenghten our battle that will one day give children the right to their extended families. Betty Cornelius CANGRANDS NATIONAL KINSHIP RR# 1 Mc Arthurs Mills, Ontario, K0L2M0 613-474-0035