Says today’s hearing opened options for child whose parents have not been allowed to choose expert-recommended life-affirming treatment for their son
WASHINGTON D.C./LONDON (07-10-17) – Following a hearing in London in which Great Ormond Street Hospital lost their bid to remove support for 11-month-old Charlie Gard without further hearing, Americans United for Life President & CEO Catherine Glenn Foster made the following statement: “Great Ormond Street Hospital asked for Mr. Justice Francis to affirm his prior, April ruling, and the Justice denied them. The book is not closed on Charlie Gard, and little Charlie still has a chance. International attention has been focused on this brave couple, Connie and Chris, fighting for the life of their son, and I will remain in London calling for the rights of parents to make decisions for their children’s care, and for hospital officials to open their doors and let Charlie’s parents seek groundbreaking new treatment for their son.”
“I am Charlie. We all are Charlie. He could be my child, or your child, or any one of us,” said Foster. “The life and death struggle facing Charlie’s parents could happen to anyone, which is why we are fighting for their right to determine their son’s welfare.”
Another hearing is set for Thursday to hear new evidence on Charlie’s condition and treatment options. On behalf of AUL, Foster will be in attendance as she was today.
“As a mother, I could not stand by as Charlie’s parents so bravely fought to seek life-saving care for their son,” said Foster. “Here we have an institution created to serve the most vulnerable in our society and hired to care for little Charlie, and yet is battling his parents to strip them all of their rights. No matter how diverse and pluralistic we are as a culture, there is one thing that unites us all: the family. We all want a better future for our children, and that’s why families worldwide are responding so strongly to Connie and Chris’s fight to give Charlie a chance.”
Charlie suffers from a rare genetic disorder, mitochondrial DNA depletion syndrome, which can cause weakened muscles and organ dysfunction, among other symptoms, and though his parents have raised money for additional treatment and hospitals around the world have volunteered their services, hospital officials have refused to allow the infant to be released to his parents.
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