Story By: Feza Uzay, Sub-Editor: Marija Stojkoska, Agency: Newsflash
A nurse locked in a custody battle with her policeman husband over their five-year-old son has had her boy taken away after a court ruled that she was a health risk because of the chances of catching COVID-19.
Cemile Deniz, 31, who worked in the State Hospital Home Health Services unit in northern Turkish city of Ordu, filed for divorce against husband Mehmet Atakan Deniz, age not revealed, after seven years of marriage.
She had already been given provisional custody of their five-year-old son Kuzey pending later confirmation by the court, but the father complained that the boy risked catching COVID-19 from his mother who was in a high-risk job.
His lawyer told the Ordu 2nd Family Court that the father should be given custody as result, saying: “The child’s mother is an ambulance nurse and constantly goes in and out of people’s houses, the child is under serious risk due to the coronavirus pandemic.”
The court agreed, saying: “Considering the high contagiousness of the novel coronavirus, it has been concluded that it will be in the child’s best interests to give temporary custody to the father at this stage.”
The court allowed the mum the chance to see her son every other weekend and for that to remain in place until the case is concluded and a final decision on custody is made.
The mum said: “We all take precautions against the coronavirus. The Ministry of Health gives me all my equipment. Before going to a patient’s house, it is checked whether those living in that house have COVID-19.
“Kuzey’s father is a police officer in the municipality of Altinordu. His job is at higher risk than mine.”
Ayse Akbulut Cubukcu, head of the Samsun branch of the Turkish Women’s Union, said: “It is very wrong to separate the child from the mother by taking advantage of the difficulties healthcare professionals are facing right now.
“This will set a bad example and every healthcare worker who wants to divorce will have to face this. This is also prejudice against women.”
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