Pro-family activism that makes a difference!


Bill HD 4212 - Filed in Massachusetts Legislature to return Justina to the custody of her parents. What you need to know to make this happen!

Here's who you should contact NOW - see below!

UPDATED: Sunday May 11, 2014 7:30 pm

On this page (below) is the information you need to help free Justina -- by being part of the effort to pass HD 4212. EVERYONE can help:

Background information

On Friday, April 4, bill HD4212, written by MassResistance, was filed in the Massachusetts Legislature. It will free Justina Pelletier from state custody immediately and return her to her parents' custody. It is a simple and unambiguous solution to a situation that has become a national nightmare.

This could theoretically happen very quickly. But everyone's help (even outside Massachusetts) is needed.

Left: Before being taken by the state, Justina was very athletic. Below: After being taken by the state, she's confined to a wheelchair.

Justina, a 16-year-old girl from West Hartford, CT, was being treated for a rare genetic disorder last year at Tufts Medical Center in Boston. At one point, a doctor from Boston Children's Hospital in Boston examined her and decided that she instead had a mental disorder. When her parents and the Tufts doctors disagreed, Children's Hospital and the Mass. Department of Children and Families (DCF) took her into state custody and put her in a psychiatric ward, where she has been for 15 months. It is outrageous.

Terrible treatment while in DCF custody

According to news reports, her parents have been allowed to see Justina for only an hour each week, and were not allowed to talk to her new doctorr. Since Justina has not been getting proper medical treatments, her health has deteriorating terribly, according to reports.

In addition, according to news reports, the parents weren't allowed to visit her for Christmas or Easter or her birthday. Presents were sent to Justina by numerous people, but the staff would not let her see them. Justina now has chipped teeth apparently from forced feeding at Children's Hospital. Her health has deteriorated considerably, and there have been fears she would die.

MassRestance articles

April 30: Battle to free Justina Pelletier continues!

April 10: Bill HD 4212 making waves in Mass Legislature.

April 6: Bill filed in Mass. Legislature to free Justina Pelletier from state custody

Legislation filed by MassResistance -- bill HD 4212

The one-page text of bill HD 4212.
You should have this handy when contacting anyone about the bill. Can also be used as a handout to give the politicians.

The bill is currently in the House Rules Committee, but could be brought to the floor for a vote at any time.

The Massachusetts State House is where the battle has been fought for the last several months!

Latest Update:

Latest Update - April 30:

The battle to free 15-year-old Justina Pelletier from her custody -- many have called it captivity -- by the Massachusetts Department of Families and Children (DCF) bureaucracy has become even more heated over the past week. And it has continued to make news internationally and be documented across the Internet.

More background on this horrible situation.

Budget item goes down. Last night (April 29) the House budget item amendment (#603), filed by two GOP State Reps, that would have freed Justina, was defeated -- simply killed by the leadership. We applaud the reps for trying this; it's a tough venue. This leaves HD 4212 as the only vehicle in the Legislature that will get the job done.

There were a lot of signs like this outside the State House this week.
[Photos by MassResistance]

Shocking deaths of children force sudden resignation of DCF head

On Tuesday the Commissioner of DCF, Olga Roche, was forced to resign after three young children in DCF's care were recently found dead through apparent negligence by the department. The deaths of these children have shocked the region, and have taken some of the public's attention off of the Justina Pelletier DCF case.

Governor continues to refuse to act

The Governor has continued to shamefully defend the process and claim that he can do nothing to stop it:

  • Last week, Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick stated that the decision to remove Justina from her parents was made "based on a detailed record of the history of neglect in the home." That was blatantly false, and the local press wasted no time excoriating the Governor for this unwarranted attack on the family.
  • But also last week, Governor told a family representative that he wanted to get Justina home and that his administration has "appeared in court to have her sent home to Connecticut" but that "the court has jurisdiction in this matter, not us."
  • On Thursday, the Governor's Health and Human Services Secretary John Polanowicz wrote an email to the Connecticut media, where Justina's family lives, saying that Massachusetts would like to release Justina, but "DCF does not have the authority to determine when and if custody should be returned to Justina's parents" because of the judge's ruling "that it is in the best interest of Justina to remain in DCF custody for now. "

Can the Governor free Justina? Given that she is a citizen of Connecticut, and given the other enormous irregularities of this case, and given that he controls DCF, it's hard to believe that an executive order in that regard would not be possible. But if not, the Legislature can.

Bill to free Justina being temporarily blocked in Mass. House

The bill in the Massachusetts Legislature which would overrule the judge and free Justina immediately, HD 4212, written by MassResistance and filed on April 4, continues to be blocked by the Democratic leadership in the House, despite national outrage and a flood of calls and emails from across the country. (More about the bill can be found on our Free Justina Action Page.)

On Friday, the national conservative magazine Human Events reported on the bill, its blockage in the Legislature, and the controversy over whether the Governor has the power to free her himself:

"If Justina Pelletier dies in the state's care, that's on the hands of Gov. Deval L. Patrick," said Brian Camenker, founder and executor director of Mass Resistance, a Waltham-based pro-family action center, who filed H.D. 4212 with the state House in early April. If signed into law, the measure would release 15-year-old Justina to her parents Linda and Lou Pelletier who reside in West Hartford, Conn."

Members of the family describe Justina, who was an athlete and competitive skater in declining health and in a wheel chair, he said. "I don't have the medical evidence but some say she could die."

Pressure must continue on Mass. House Democrats to pass HD 4212

The offices of the House and Senate Democrat leadership need to continue getting a flood of phone calls and emails from Massachusetts and around the country. We encouraging people to call the two House leaders, and the two Senate leaders.

But in addition, we want people to call their own Mass. State Senator and Representative -- or call them even if you don't live in the district. Tell them that you demand the Democratic leadership stop blocking bill HD 4212!

The Democrats hold the power to make this happen but are holding it up. Much of this, as we've said before, is to avoid antagonizing the Governor. Well, we're all tired of those political games! This girl needs to be freed!

What you can do: Keep up the pressure & spread the word!

We continue to believe wholeheartedly that this bill -- HD 4212 -- is the most direct way to get Justina freed. And it gives everyone across the country an opportunity to do something that makes a difference!

Other actions going on to help Justina

Other groups are trying other ways to help free Justine. Here's the latest:

Writ of Habeas Corpus filed by Liberty Counsel. This is certainly a shrewd and bold move. We applaud them for doing it. In a normal place, it would be a no-brainer that Justina would be back home in ten minutes from that. But here, it could take weeks to work itself through the hostile Massachusetts court system, and who knows how it might end up. But we're glad they're doing it! There are apparently also some other lawsuits being filed by Liberty Counsel.

We're also continuing to stay in touch with our contacts in Washington DC regarding national legislation and other activity that might be going on.

Let's all keep up this fight. Keep checking this page!

This protester outside the courthouse back in February pretty much says it for all of us.

General instructions: Here's what to do!

Everyone around the country can get involved!

1. Get the word out. Post this on websites and Facebook, etc. Call talk shows and get them to discuss this. Anything you can to spread the word. We will be posting and updating all the information on this Free Justina Action Page, also reached via:

2. Call and email the key politicians listed below. There cannot be enough calls and emails. And let us know what their response is.

3. Can you go to the State House? We need people to go to the State House and personally visit the offices of these politicians -- and others. These personal visits are very important. Let us know so we can give you materials.

4. Call your own Mass. State Rep and State Senator. If you live in Massachusetts, you can find out your elected officials HERE. Then call or email them. Tell them we are tired of the Democratic leadership blocking this critical bill. They need to support Bill HD 4212 and vote YES when it gets to them.

5. Keep fighting. Don't give up.

What did they tell you? You can contact MassResistance HERE or phone us at 781-890-6001.

The key legislators to contact



These are the four people who control the legislation in the Legislature. They have the power to make this move very quickly -- or not at all. They NEED to hear from you.


Rep. Robert DeLeo (D-Winthrop)- Speaker of the House
Phone: 617-722-2500
Email: [email protected]

Rep. Ronald Mariano (D-Quincy)- Majority Leader
Phone: 617-722-2300
Email: [email protected]


Sen. Therese Murray (D-Plymouth)- Senate President
Phone: 617-722-1500
Email: [email protected]

Sen. Stanley Rosenberg (D-Amherst)- Majority Leader
Phone: 617-722-1532    
Email: [email protected]


The 200 Mass State Senators and Representatives
Tell them you're OUTRAGED that the Democratic leadership is holding up this bill. We want it passed immediately!

Talking points for calling or emailing the legislators

(It is good to have a copy of the bill in front of you for reference.)

1.THE MAIN MESSAGE: PASS HD 4212 NOW! It can’t wait and linger in committee. Don’t let this girl die in DCF custody.

2. There is no reason this can't be done quickly. The recent “upskirt” bill was filed and passed in one day. This is MORE important. Yet they've been stalling this bill for over a month.

3. This is NOT the “resolution” HD 4157 by Reps. Lombardo and Lyons that was filed in March. This is completely different. It orders that Justina be freed immediately to the custody of her parents. That’s what must be done.

4. It is not acceptable to give Justina to the custody of other bureaucrats in Connecticut, and put her and her family through more physical and emotional trauma. She must be freed to her parents.

5. If there are particular issues with the text of the bill, that can be fixed.

6. Tell them the whole nation is watching this.



This sign held outside the courthouse on Feb. 24 pretty much says it all.
[MassResistance photo]

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