Roughly one year after the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families took custody of 15-year-old Justina Pelletier, her case has become a national issue.
On Wednesday, it was announced that State Reps. Marc Lombardo and Jim Lyons, both Republicans, have attempted to initiate the legal process of releasing the girl to her parents. Lyons appeared on TheBlaze Radio with Jay Severin Thursday to speak more about the case, slamming the state for what he sees as heavy-handed methods and misguided attempts to "[protect] the system that they have control over."
"We have an agency, DCF, a bureaucracy that's going beyond [the] scope that they're allowed to advocate in," he began. "They're intruding into parental rights. [We] have a Democratic governor who doesn't want to get involved, who's under all kinds of - one scandal after another scandal. You have an attorney general who's part of the Democratic leadership ... They're protecting the system that they have control over."
That "system," he added, "appears to be designed to intrude on parental rights."
Lyons added that dozens of children have died in state custody in the last three years alone.
"Maybe it's time for [the DCF] to take a step back and say, with all humility, let parents decide what's medically in their children's best interest," Lyons remarked.
Justina Pelletier was placed in state custody after her parents disagreed with the diagnosis of physicians at Boston Children's Hospital, who said she had somataform disorder, a psychological condition. Her parents believe she has mitochondrial disease, a condition she had been successfully receiving treatment for at Tufts Medical Center.
Justina's medical treatment for mitochondrial disease has been largely discontinued since the controversial diagnosis. Though she was reportedly ice skating before entering the hospital with flu-like symptoms a year ago, she is now in a wheelchair.
Listen to the complete interview courtesy of TheBlaze Radio Network, below: