Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Motherisk Laboratory controversy: Hospital for Sick Children; Faulty hair drug analysis with dire consequences for mothers; York University's Innocence Project says review should be broadened in light of one mother's recent case; Reporter Rachel Mendleson;

HEADING: "Motherisk review should be expanded: Innocence Project."

SUB-HEADING: "York University's Innocence Project says the scope of the review of hair drug tests performed at Sick Kids  should be broadened  in light of one mother's recent case," by reporter Rachel Mendleson, published by the Toronto Star, on February 10 2015.

GIST: "Sarah was in the midst of a bitter child custody fight with her ex when she got drug test results she feared could tip the scales in his favour. With both partners levelling allegations of substance abuse, they agreed last spring to submit hair samples to the Motherisk Laboratory at the Hospital for Sick Children for testing. “I had zero concerns. Sick Kids is a well-known, respected hospital,” says the 34-year-old health-care worker, who claims she has only an occasional glass of wine, and does not do drugs. Her confidence crumbled when she got the results, which indicated she had used marijuana — at a rate, she was told, of at least three to five joints per week — in the previous three months. “I started almost hyperventilating, because I didn’t know what to do,” says Sarah, whose name has been changed to protect the identity of her young daughter. “I was terrified.” It would take days of pleading with Motherisk to retest her sample, and nearly a month of waiting for the results, before the lab confirmed in a letter that the analysis was, in fact, incorrect. “(Sarah’s) hair sample should be considered negative for cannabinoids,” Motherisk manager Joey Gareri wrote in a letter last June. “It is highly likely that the initial positive finding for cannabinoids ... was a false-positive result.” According to York University’s Innocence Project, the case suggests that the problems at Motherisk may have continued beyond 2010. Following a Star investigation, the province appointed a retired judge in November to probe the “reliability and adequacy” of five years’ worth of hair drug tests performed by Motherisk and used in child protection and criminal cases, from 2005 to 2010. In light of Sarah’s story, the Innocence Project is asking the province to expand the scope of the review to include more recent cases, as well as child custody battles that do not involve protection issues."

The entire story can be found at:


Dear Reader. Keep your eye on the Charles Smith Blog. We are following this case.
I have added a search box for content in this blog which now encompasses several thousand posts. The search box is located  near the bottom of the screen just above the list of links. I am confident that this powerful search tool provided by "Blogger" will help our readers and myself get more out of the site.

The Toronto Star, my previous employer for more than twenty incredible years, has put considerable effort into exposing the harm caused by Dr. Charles Smith and his protectors - and into pushing for reform of Ontario's forensic pediatric pathology system. The Star has a "topic" section which focuses on recent stories related to Dr. Charles Smith. It can be found at:

Information on "The Charles Smith Blog Award"- and its nomination process - can be found at:
I look forward to hearing from readers at:
Harold Levy; Publisher; The Charles Smith Blog;