Family Law

North Carolina Mom Loses Custody Because of Advanced Breast Cancer

A North Carolina woman has lost primary custody of her two children in large part because of her advanced breast cancer.

Judge Nancy Gordon of Durham County said the children were better off with their father in Chicago because of Alaina Giordano’s uncertain prognosis, report NBC Chicago, the Daily Mail and HuffPost Living. The judge also noted that Giordano is unemployed and she could move to Chicago to be near her children, 11-year-old Sofia and 5-year-old Bud, according to the Today Show.

Giordano told Today she doesn’t want to move because of her cancer treatment in Durham. “It appears to me that the judge decided that my husband’s job is more important than my health,” she said.

Giordano has Stage IV breast cancer. More than 7,000 people have signed an online petition asking North Carolina Gov. Bev Perdue to overturn the decision.

NBC Chicago spoke with family law attorney Michael Cornacchia. “I’ve never heard of a mother losing children because of poor health or being sick,” he said. “What the court has done is expanded the traditional understanding of what unfitness is.”

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