I want my baby back - Panorama

(602 Posts)
Hels20 Mon 13-Jan-14 09:39:15

I hesitate to put this on the board but would be interested in the views of anyone who watches this - it's tonight on BBC 1 at 9pm.

I hope it gives a balanced account. Then there is the Channel 4 programme on Wednesday T 10pm on Finding a Mum and Dad.

drspouse Mon 13-Jan-14 10:38:26

From the news this morning, it sounds like it's a vehicle for that MP whose name I'm not mentioning in case he starts harassing us on this board (as he has done on other MN boards).

Lilka Mon 13-Jan-14 13:38:20

I think it's a topic that needs discussing because whilst rare, it can happen. It's not a case of social workers being evil and snatching babies, but of doctors making a genuine mistake in a difficult case, and then addressing what mechanisms exist for parents to get a second opinion and clear their name if there has been a mistake

However I have a horrible feeling that this program is not going to be a good discussion of these issues whilst profiling the stories. I think it's going to be very sensationalist unfortunately, and sensationalism is not helpful. It's likely to veer down the "castigate social workers and doctors" route with little more than a token statement from a professional at the end

I hope I'm proved wrong

Choccyjules Mon 13-Jan-14 17:20:53

Martin Narey has done a balanced POV about the programme, there's a link from his Twitter acc @martinnarey

drspouse Mon 13-Jan-14 17:23:52
Choccyjules Mon 13-Jan-14 17:25:40

Thanks amjustnottechieenough

armsinjumpers Mon 13-Jan-14 20:12:07

I really struggle with these sorts of programmes. There are many many different professionals, discussions, assessment, expert reports involved before a child can be removed from their parents' care, not to mention the opportunities for parents to make the changes required to safeguard their child.

These programmes do little to further the cause of abused children preferring to vilify the professionals involved who work over and above their hours and genuinely want the best outcomes for children.

I shan't be watching...

Lilka Mon 13-Jan-14 20:23:52

This is going, I think, to be only about cases where children are removed from their families very quickly without the usual assessments, support, input etc, because they are taken to hospital and found to have fractures etc

In which case obviously social services might act very quickly and get an EPO and take the child into care from the hospital

There's no reason to vilify social workers for acting very quickly when told by doctors "this child is in a and e right now with a lot of fractures and it's our opinion these are non accidental injuries". What are SS supposed to do? Say "oh okay but let us interview the parents and if they say 'we didn't do it' we'll just believe them and let them take the child home"

But I think this program might do just that

Devora Mon 13-Jan-14 21:09:28

Watching with interest...

MerryInthechelseahotel Mon 13-Jan-14 21:22:03

I know Lilka! What are they supposed to do?

He has just said he encourages parents to run away! They could be abusers!

MerryInthechelseahotel Mon 13-Jan-14 21:23:39

I would be interested in these babies whilst in fc whether they had more fractures.

The programme is very interesting and the current bit is about the medical situation. I don't think it is not about the standard situations where families might be observed for a time. I think it is about quite specific situations.

Lilka Mon 13-Jan-14 21:27:41

Blood pressure rather high right now

Great tweet "Perhaps this should be about doctors not social workers"

Agh more high pressure - we have confidentiality in courts for a reason!

The family courts use a balance of probablilites for a bloody good reason!!

Lilka Mon 13-Jan-14 21:29:33

Exactly Italian this whole program is about one rare situation of injuries

Yet JH is going on about being contacted by hundred of families - yeah I doubt all of them are fracture situations

Devora Mon 13-Jan-14 21:32:49

Only a very stupid person would deny that there will have been cases where children were taken into care because of underlying and unexplained medical problems. And how heartbreaking that is.

But.

What on earth are social workers to do in a situation where there are fractures, the doctors are saying it's probably abuse, the father admits guilt then says he was lying, the mother runs away, the grandparents side with the parents? Do you give the parents the benefit of the doubt, and risk the child's safety? Or prioritise the child, and risk a miscarriage of justice?

Really poor analysis on this programme so far.

Lilka Mon 13-Jan-14 21:35:05

Oh

Baby Alyssa was adopted

So why the fuck are you showing her baby pictures on national television??!!!!

oadcb Mon 13-Jan-14 21:38:28

Prob following advice from Ian Josephs telling people to plaster photos everywhere

MrsBW Mon 13-Jan-14 21:52:20

Thread about this on the Telly Addicts topic.

Pigsmummy Mon 13-Jan-14 22:02:27

Very sad and I wonder if parents will be rushing to get vitamin tests done.

I thought that was really terrible and sad and reminded me of the 'cot death' incidence in the early days where the situation was not known about. This really does seem to be a medical situation. Still very sad.

Lilka Mon 13-Jan-14 22:09:21

I'm still utterly fuming for the adoptive parents of baby Alyssa

I hope to God the BBC used a fake name for her, otherwise I hope to God there are repercussions

Poor parents. Imagine watching TV and finding your precious childs photos and name plastered on a national program.

Fucking steam coming out my ears

Hels20 Mon 13-Jan-14 22:12:08

Italian - the reporter was the same guy who investigated the cot deaths for 4 years and managed to help overturn the convictions for Angela Cannings and Sally Clark.

It shows how hard Social services have things, sometimes. This programme seemed v specific - about vitamin d deficiency and genetic bone disorders. I thought it might be more general and sensationalist - but I didn't think it was.

Made me feel sad though when the parents had to say goodbye to their son. Reminded me of my DS's birth mum as I know she loved him (even though she was incapable of looking after him).

I did think that Alyssa's parents were very naive to act as they did - and why didn't her parents step forward to care for Alyssa? (Although perhaps they wouldn't have been given custody because they refused to accept explanation.)

Interesting.

It was a heart-breaking programme.

The medical expert who apparently claimed 'white babies don't get rickets' is seriously dangerous. That level of arrogance reminds me of Roy Meadows and his infamous 'one cot death is a tragedy, two are suspicious, three is murder'.

Medical evidence should be rigorously tested in court. But social workers and doctors should be engaged in critical thinking and reflection long before cases get to court.

No-one doubts that there are cases where children are abused. But medical opinion must be tested. What is the evidence the doctor is citing? What is it based on? What tests have been done and what have not been done? What are these tests capable of showing? What is the range of false positives or negatives? What other possibilities are there? What is this doctor's field of expertise? Is this case within that field, or are there other specialists who should be consulted? (Thinking of Roy Meadows and how no-one bothered to cross-check with a statistician.)

Differential diagnosis can be hard. But it should be a fundamental part of any medical decision-making process. It's what doctors are supposed to do.

anxiousnow Mon 13-Jan-14 22:16:00

The Grandma crying that she won't be alive to see her Grandson when he turns 18 :'(

DavidJSolicitor Mon 13-Jan-14 22:27:01

I am a solicitor who represents parents in care cases and I have acted in similar cases. With legal aid I have been able to get expert witnesses to challenge the views of the doctors who accused the parents of abuse.

The government who say they want to prioritise care cases is cutting legal aid so that the experts I need cannot act in future. See the Newsnight programme at
www.youtube.com/watch?v=PCwSEaKPWjg.

Legal for lawyers has been cut back to the rates of the 1990s and many firms are closing or stopping doing legal aid.

David

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