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Nanny abusing children - DESPERATELY NEED ADVICE

(58 Posts)
Mummyneedshelp1 Mon 30-Sep-13 23:35:32

My eldest 9 year old child has just revealed our nanny has been mistreating her - smacking on legs and face and threatening to get her in trouble if she reveals anything.

She went on to say she did the same thing with her baby sister (18 months) Perhaps even treating her worse - ignoring the baby when she falls and hurts herself, shouting at her, smacking her thigh. Apparently the nanny even threw a ball at the baby and when it hit her head which hurt her and made her cry the nanny just put the volume up on the TV so the crying didn't disturb her TV watching.

It seems the nanny behaves in a completely different way when I and my husband are not around.

As you can imagine, this news is most distressing. Made worse by the fact I could see the baby changed towards the nanny. Wouldn't want to go to her, would suddenly stand still staring away from her in her presence, clinging on to me if I would pass her to the nanny.

I dread to think what the nanny could have done to the baby when my eldest daughter isn't around.

Needless to say the nanny is gone - on our next meeting I will be firing her evil butt without pay.

My question is how can she be disciplined for such poor and potentially illegal actions?

Though she smacked my children, she did not leave any marks. We also have no proof, no video.... It will just be my daughters word against the nanny's.

As a Filipina, I also don't think she is registered with Ofsted nor has any records for CRB.

However - I am aware she has just been legally made a British citizen. I don't know if there is anything I can do about that.

Also I have details of a family she still babysits for - I don't know if it might be worth finding out how the nanny behaves with them and perhaps warning them about her.

Yes - I am angry, fuming even about this revelation. But more than that, I actually would like to protect other families and other children from going through this experience. There must be some way other parents can be warned and make sure she never works with children again.

I haven't let the nanny know I know yet - I want to handle this as delicately and wisely as possible. The baby is with grand father and I am always around when she is with my daughter - when she behaves well.

Pls forgive the length of this post. It has all been quite frightful really

sad sad sad

BrianTheMole Mon 30-Sep-13 23:39:31

Hmm, difficult. What a horrible situation. My first thoughts are to run it by the police and see what they think. It may not get anywhere, but it will be on record. I think that would be a good place to start.

BrianTheMole Mon 30-Sep-13 23:40:40

Yes I think I would mention it to the other family as well.

ancientbuchanan Mon 30-Sep-13 23:48:19

Umm, you will have to be v careful to avoid slander.

If I were you I would enquire of CAB and also SS what the position is.

She should be CRBd. Anyone who works with children should be.

You had better also be clear about what reference you give, if any, as you don't want to either to be done for libel nor not provide due warnings to higher employers. Hence suggestion of CAB and SS.

VicarInaTutu Mon 30-Sep-13 23:52:05

why would you employ some one as a nanny without crb checks or being offsted registered? is that not just madness? also please make absolutely sure your 9 yr old is being wholly truthful before involving police etc. I wouldnt have employed someone to look after children who wasnt registered.

Mummyneedshelp1 Mon 30-Sep-13 23:59:55

Hi all

Thanks kindly for all your responses!

Anciientbuchanan - what is CAB and SS??

And yes - my husband and I have spoken to my daughter at length. Even if there is a possibility she might not be telling the truth, we wouldn't be any kind of parents to ignore. Also - some of the words she uses to describe what the nanny says to her aren't words from her every day vocabulary

Besides - my husband and I were growing suspicious of the baby's reaction to her. The baby was clearly scared to be with her

BrianTheMole Tue 01-Oct-13 00:07:12

Citizens advice bureau and social services. Although I work for social services, and apart from checking to see if she is known on the system we would generally say to contact the police.

afromom Tue 01-Oct-13 00:08:57

CAB is Citizen's Advice Bureau
SS is Social Services

I would definitely contact the other family.

Did the nanny come through an agency or was it a private arrangement?

onedev Tue 01-Oct-13 00:09:39

I'd also say definitely contact the Police - how terrible for you all. Good luck.

IslaValargeone Tue 01-Oct-13 00:13:04

Really surprised at you hiring someone whose background you haven't checkedconfused When is she due back to work?

Mummyneedshelp1 Tue 01-Oct-13 00:19:18

I thought u might have meant Citizens Advice - but I wasn't aware they deal with this sort of thing

And yes - I was introduced through an agency who informed me those checks had been carried out

IslaValargeone Tue 01-Oct-13 00:20:53

Have you spoken to the agency?

afromom Tue 01-Oct-13 00:21:39

I would also speak to the agency that matched you too then, as they would rehire her to another family if you do not inform them of her behaviour.

If she was introduced through an agency they may be registered with ofsted, you could check on the website via the agency name.

SavoyCabbage Tue 01-Oct-13 00:23:19

I would ring the 101 police number to ask for advice.

Chibbs Tue 01-Oct-13 00:28:02


BrianTheMole Tue 01-Oct-13 00:29:20

Yes you need to talk to the agency as well then.

IslaValargeone Tue 01-Oct-13 00:31:25

How did you manage to find out she wasn't CRB checked after all?

ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Tue 01-Oct-13 00:32:56

Which agency did you use?

weewhile Tue 01-Oct-13 01:05:55

How horrible! Really tricky situation if you have no physical proof.

Easy to say this in hindsight, but It's always essential to document everything if you had niggling doubts. You say the baby was scared of her? This should have rung big alarm bells. Babies don't react that way for no good reason. All good nannies should be able to account for their day/actions through documentation too. This at least would give you firm times and dates for where/when she was with your children and what she was doing and also how your children were disciplined/ played/ate/slept/behaved, which can also be very telling.

I would contact the police or social services and take their advice.
Contact your agency and request they investigate her.

How old was your nanny? Nothing excuses the abuse of children, but it's never wise to leave children with someone young and inexperienced who can't cope with the heavy demands of childcare.

This was one of the reasons I didn't return to work and stayed home after my son was born. Just can't trust anyone.

Good luck.

Cindy34 Tue 01-Oct-13 08:29:03

Confront her, ask her straight out if she smacked your 9 year olds legs. She may admit it and if so dismissal will be a lot easier. If they deny it, then it will be trickier but you can dismiss them with notice and insist they do not work that notice - but means you would still pay the notice period.

I would seek advice from social services - there should be a central number, sometimes called a contact centre, run by your local authority/county council. They may not be able to do anything but they may log it.

Certainly let the agency know. However unless your nanny admits it, then there is no evidence, just a suspicion.

Your 9 year old is probably telling the truth, you know when they are and when they are making something up. So the nanny needs to leave immediately, though you must follow the correct procedure. can advise on employment law, dismissal procedures. They may also be able to tell you about what you can and can not say in a reference.

Good luck, not a nice situation. What will you do about childcare, as presumably you still need a nanny?

NomDeClavier Tue 01-Oct-13 09:13:19

What an awful situation. As you are sacking her for harming a child you must report to the DBS

You should also tell the agency she came through and ask them for confirmation of all the checks. Do be aware that it is your responsibility as an employer, not theirs as a placement service, to ensure an employee's suitability, but if they explicitly stated everything was in order and didn't do a DBS check they lied. In that case check to see whether they are a member of the ANA or the REC and complain to them (and I'd be inclined to go public with it too).

CAB, and your employers liability insurance to see whether you have legal advice with them, to get information about dismissing her properly.

Do NOT let her back near your children. It will weaken your case irreparably.

Contact the police to investigate bringing charges so this goes properly on record.

Just because she's Filipina doesn't mean she's not registered with OFSTED. It's worth calling them to check and if she is than lodge your concerns with them too.

hermioneweasley Tue 01-Oct-13 09:18:24

When did she start working for you and is she your employee or through an agency?

Bearandcub Tue 01-Oct-13 09:22:40

Police and report as a Safeguarding matter to your Local Children's Safeguarding Board whose number will be under the Children and Families section of your Local Authority's website.

Seb101 Tue 01-Oct-13 09:27:07

How horrible for you all. You know your child, and are in the best position to judge the truth in what she's saying. I would not mention anything to the nanny for the time being. If she's due to work soon, I'd make some excuse as to why you don't need her for a couple of days (grandparents visiting, your ill, going away etc) I'd then use those days to contain all of the agencies/police to get as much advice as possible. Literally ring everyone and get informed about the best course of action. I would worry that having her back to work as usual would harm your case.
One word of warning; I would take what your child is saying with a pinch of salt. A 9 year old may be clever enough to know that saying these things will result in getting the nanny to leave; just a thought. Not suggesting your child is making this up, but I'd have the thought in the back of your mind. Like I said you know your child; I'd know if my child was telling the truth! So follow your gut instinct. If you believe this had happened I'd do everything in my power to endure the nanny never worked with children again.
I saw a programme on tv about something similar, and family set up secret camera to catch nanny. Left children and sure enough she started the abusive behaviour. This provided proof and nanny was prosecuted. Obviously not sure I'd recommend
this as it means leaving your child to be abused!!! hmm But the nanny got caught and it saved other children going through the same. Bit controversial, but thought id mention it. Don't think I could do it, but others may think this at least gives you justice. Cause sadly, without proof, this nanny is likely to move on very easily and continue in childcare.
I really feel for you and your children, and want to wish you the very best of luck in whatever course of action you take. Xx

NomDeClavier Tue 01-Oct-13 10:08:04

Don't set up a hidden camera!!! It might seem very tempting and give you proof but it will ruin any case because there are laws against filming people without notifying them about it first - hence all the signs about CCTV you see. Get advice from the police about what you can do.

my2bundles Tue 01-Oct-13 10:10:08

I would be speaking to the local police, today.

ihearsounds Tue 01-Oct-13 10:19:22

Someone assaults my child, I wouldn't just be sacking them. I would be talking to the police. They have trained professionals that deal with child victims all the time. They know how to question them to get a conviction.

weewhile Tue 01-Oct-13 12:35:59

I agree with NomDeClavier and Bearandcub.
As much as you probably want to tear her to shreds, you do have to follow guidelines.
Is she still working in your house? You said the nanny doesn't know you know and that you don't leave her alone with the children anymore.
You need to get her out ASAP and not let her near the children. Make some excuse if you have to, but allowing her to continue caring for the kids just weakens any official complaint you make and also sends a potentially harmful message to your children that you are not protecting them.

Without proof you may be able to lodge a complaint, but I don't know if you will succeed in having her struck off. It's a horrid thing to be abused in your own home.
If you do hire a new nanny, please choose someone with loads of experience, training and absolutely follow up at least 2 references.

As a previous nanny of 20 years I unfortunately know families who have been through similar situations. I sadly had to finish a friendship with another nanny because she admitted to me that she had 'slapped' a child in her care. I told her employer and she was fired.
Not just nannies though. I have also witnessed nursery staff being far too firm physically with a child and I reported that too.

Hope it all works out and you and your children can move forward in time.

Blondeshavemorefun Tue 01-Oct-13 14:35:28

surely agencies make sure that all nannies are crbed/dbs - and as vicar said as a parent you would check this - why on earth would you hire someone who wasnt

and if the agency said she was but isnt then you should sue the agency

but that doesnt help you at the moment, so if you think your 9yr is telling the truth then you need to suspend the nanny now, if you carry on having them care for your child it means you arent that worried and can go against you

how long has this nanny been looking after your children? could your 9yr want her sacked and you to give up work?

you say she wont be left alone with them/do you not work/or taken some emergency leave?

contact the police and agency and ss

NomDeClavier Tue 01-Oct-13 14:50:28

surely agencies make sure that all nannies are crbed/dbs

You'd think so, but no...some don't at all, some just do a cursory flick through, some accept a check that's 5 years out of date. And some actually do their job properly but the loophole is that the responsiblity rests with the parent.

bigknickersforthepicker Tue 01-Oct-13 15:12:40

Call the police and have them ready at the house when she arrives for her next working day.

Shit. im angry for you. Your poor, poor children

TeamSouthfields Tue 01-Oct-13 16:02:52

I would talk to the agency first!

MissStrawberry Tue 01-Oct-13 18:51:17

Berating the OP for trusting the agency and not checking things is hardly helping. I am sure she feels crap as it is.

Definitely call the police. She has assaulted your children. Throwing something at a baby's head ffs!

nearlymumofone Tue 01-Oct-13 19:56:29

This would amount to child cruelty/neglect. Particularly the smacking of the 9 year old on the face, ignoring a baby who was hurt and throwing the ball at the baby.This would certainly amount to a police matter if you wanted to take it that far. There is proof as your 9 year old has witnessed it. Things go to court on the strength of this.

You would need to decide though whether you would want to put her through a police interview (would be with specialist child protection officers who are well trained but still you would need to consider whether you would want to put her through this experience) and potentially court appearance.

However If you didn't go to the police this nany may well go on to nanny other children/babies. Consider how you feel about this.

Regarding the CRB check. All a CRB check reveals really is that someone hasn't be caught before. Not that they are necessarily of good character IYSWIM!

grumpalumpgrumped Thu 03-Oct-13 19:54:59

CRB or now DBS checks only cover UK so if she has only recently started working here that would be pointless. If we recruit someone who has worked for long periods or lived in another country we are told to contact their local police force.

Conract your local safeguarding childrens department.

bigknickersforthepicker Fri 04-Oct-13 07:48:55

OP Can you update?

ReetPetit Fri 04-Oct-13 14:25:19

this is what happens when you employ unchecked people I'm sorry to say.

is she living in your home? I would have packed her bags as soon as I knew and gone straight to the police.

bigknickersforthepicker Fri 04-Oct-13 14:28:41

I think you'll find even the ' checked' childcare providers abuse? Crbs serve a false sense of security. If they haven't been caught it tells you nothing. Perhaps the op made alack in judgment in employing this particular woman but I don't think berating her for it is helping- I am genuinely concerned for her family and would like to know that this abuser is being dealt with.

Kendodd Fri 04-Oct-13 14:32:48

Call the NSPCC, they should be able to tell you what to do.

ARoundSoundLikeGround Fri 04-Oct-13 15:37:41

I'm really sorry that you have had this experience but why would you employ a Nanny without a CRB check?
Is she formally employed by you or do you pay cash in hand. I'm getting a little whiff of dodginess here

Nicadooby Sat 05-Oct-13 19:12:30

Any update?

IrisWildthyme Sat 05-Oct-13 19:26:48

Definitely don't set up a hidden camera - do not let her be in the same room as your children unsupervised again. Setting up a hidden camera is effectively trying to use your child as bait in order to secure a prosecution. Your children should not be used as bait.

Certainly dismiss her. You probably should pay notice though as you cannot prove misconduct beyond reasonable doubt. Certainly do not agree to be a referee and report your concerns to the agency but you will have to be clear that you have no proof.

highinthesky Sat 05-Oct-13 19:27:57

I'd really like to know what the outcome is too. Is it a police matter?

IrisWildthyme Sat 05-Oct-13 19:28:22

(oh sorry hadn't seen page two this is all old news now...)

highinthesky Sat 05-Oct-13 19:30:40

Why pay notice? The law allows dismissal without reason within the first 2 years of employment. Surely logging a call with the police should be enough if your nanny decides to challenge on the grounds of discrimination.

If you are sure that she has been harming your children, don't pay her a red cent.

IrisWildthyme Sat 05-Oct-13 19:40:07

high employees have the right to one week's paid notice after one month's continuous employment.

Blondeshavemorefun Sat 05-Oct-13 19:53:08

i know op is prob sorting things out in real life

but hate threads like these that has no update several days later, esp when people try and help and give advice - bugs me (sorry)

hettienne Sat 05-Oct-13 20:30:59

highinthesky - if you dismiss someone for no reason you still have to pay them their contractual notice! You can't just fire someone on the spot without reason.

However, hurting a child is gross misconduct and so you can fire someone without notice for that reason.

HoopersGinger Mon 07-Oct-13 10:24:37

You can film in your own home

ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Mon 07-Oct-13 20:50:37

Hoopers yes you can, but not without informing someone you have employed to work there.

Blondes I'd put money on it being a wind up.

Llareggub Mon 07-Oct-13 20:56:42

If you do come back, OP, please do ensure that you report the nanny to the ISA to ensure that she does not work with children again. If you google you'll find it.

K8Middleton Mon 07-Oct-13 21:06:11

I agree with ChippingIn. Total bollox.

Although I did employ a nanny with no crb check. She had good references and we were the second family of a share where she had been employed for 3.5 years previously. A crb isn't a magic talisman. It's just a check that nothing has been reported - not confirmation the nanny's ok. She wasn't OFSTED registered either. Most nannies aren't unless employer wants to use childcare vouchers ime.

Blondeshavemorefun Mon 07-Oct-13 22:37:56

i hope not chipping sad

Wendy555 Mon 14-Oct-13 16:30:28

Firstly praise your daughter for being able to share the information with you. Let her know that she was brave and she did the right thing. Secondly let your daughter know that you will need to tell the police so that the nanny cannot hurt other children and explain to her that the police will want to ask her about what happened to her,continue to reassure her. Call the police and inform them or you can ring Victim Support or any of the recommended agencies mentioned above for advice.What your children have experienced is physical abuse and emotinal All the best.

Annie2012 Wed 29-Jan-14 22:23:18

Would i be wrong to assume you only had this woman as you were able to pay her low wages, ALWAYS hire someone with qualifications and a crb! We are not expensive! I personally earn 7.50ph and I'm a modern day Mary poppins! I am amazing at my job and do anything in my power to keep children in my care happy, healthy and loved and keep parents happy. Well worth paying more for that!!

OutragedFromLeeds Thu 30-Jan-14 00:34:37

This is an old thread.

Pinkandwhite Thu 30-Jan-14 00:45:43

Bloody hell, this is just awful. I'm so sorry this has happened to your children/you. Obviously go to the police and social services. I would also recommend contacting all your local nanny agencies to warn them so that they don't use her - nanny agencies tend to have lists of nannies they have been warned about.

Pinkandwhite Thu 30-Jan-14 00:46:38

Sorry - didnt realise this was old.

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