Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, see our mental health web guide which can point you to expert advice.

This fear that social services will come and take your children...

(636 Posts)
willsurvivethis Fri 29-Jan-10 15:41:24

...it worries me!

There seem to be so many women out there who are afraid to seek help for depression and other problems out of fear that they will lose their children.

I have just asked MNHQ if they would consider doing something with this. Because surely if so many of us fear to lose our children something is going wrong somewhere! Surely we should all be albe to seek help with confidence?

What are your thoughts on this? I struggle with PTSD and even told my doctor that I tended to keep emotional distance from my ds when he's ill without even considering the possibility of that having repercussions.

NanaNina Thu 18-Dec-14 13:00:56

What nonsense is this!!

DAVISBROWN Thu 18-Dec-14 05:26:45

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

DAVISBROWN Thu 18-Dec-14 05:24:34

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

Mim0 Wed 17-Dec-14 18:26:10

Regarding the OP, I was actually told by a Healthwatch manager that many mothers don't seek help for mental health issues for fear of social services being brought in and their children removed. I researched a bit and found information out there that supported this to be the case. The whole point is not that parents with mental ill-health make bad parents, that is of course untrue, but that there should not be this fear of social services in the first place. The clue is in the word "services". People should feel they are there for support, not breaking up families. There is no smoke without fire as they say.

Regarding the issue of forced adoption, it is relevant to this thread because there have been plenty of parents having children removed for supposed mental health problems, and obviously we know adoptions that the parents resist or do not agree to, is what is meant by forced adoptions. That isn't a conspiracy theory, we all know it happens and we all know it is at times done for wrongful reasons.

I agree with those that say no matter what the law states, things happen in the process that shouldn't happen, and that despite the decision being the judge's, the judge is far likelier to believe the state than a parent, when the state colludes to remove children, it ends up as professional bias and they all support one another in what they are saying. How can a parent easily fight that?

It should be burden of proof, not conjecture and hearsay. Professionals are just as subject to dishonesty and error as anyone else. Unless there is proof a child has been physically abused or neglected, the child should be left with the family and the right supports given for parents supposedly with mental health issues or supposedly responsible for emotional harm. If there is very good reason to suspect a child is at high risk then of course social services need to step in to look into things and protect a child where necessary. But it's way too high a price to both children and parents when children are removed for other reasons or without proper evidence, especially without support being given to families first. When you consider the following (lots more out there about care home, foster parents and adoptive parent failings) it's even more vital that not only are children not wrongfully removed but they are not the put into dangerous settings:

www.telegraph.co.uk/health/children_shealth/10149479/What-our-judges-forget-when-they-send-children-into-care.html
www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-30096187
www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/9750846/Care-system-failing-the-most-vulnerable-and-damaged-children.html
www.huffingtonpost.com/lisa-belkin/adoption-spanking-childabuse_b_1081617.html
www.huffingtonpost.com/lisa-belkin/adoption-spanking-childabuse_b_1081617.html

Spero Wed 05-Nov-14 08:12:02

Soontobesix - this was a zombie thread that got revived, so I don't think there is any danger that we are trampling over what the op wanted to achieve - look at the date this thread started.

0J I think you really should watch the Baby P documentary. I thought it was an excellent piece of journalism and just let everyone speak for themselves - which was very effective.

the main point was that GOSH and the police combined to push ALL the blame onto the SW - they knew they were in a weak position because of the murder of Victoria Climb, they knew the public would jump on that bandwagon.

But of the 60 or so contacts Peter had with the professionals, the majority of those were with health professionals. And GOSH was running a 'clinically risky' health centre. GOSH won't learn any lessons from this because they refuse to accept they had any lessons to learn, it was all the fault of Sharon Shoesmith...

the legacy of Baby P has been very serious for the whole system. It may yet be too late to turn this ship around, I don't know. But we have got to try.

Nana, in answer to your question as to why people want to believe the conspiracy theories, fwiw here is my thesis:
1) such beliefs are hardwired in some people
2) some people have been trampled on by arrogant or uncaring professionals
3) some people cannot accept that they have harmed their children and are looking for someone else to blame.

SoonToBeSix Wed 05-Nov-14 01:39:20

OJ and Nina could you maybe start your own thread instead of totally taking over this one.

NanaNina Wed 05-Nov-14 01:05:12

Thanks - it's not good at all on the legal aid issue, neither is the withdrawal of legal aid for private law cases. It means that the parent who can afford to pay a lawyer will have a significant advantage over the one who can't afford legal representation.

I have only recently watched the Baby P case. I actually found the social worker and Sharon Shoesmith very credible and some of the inaccurate information was corrected in relation to how many contacts there were between the family and the social worker - far less than was reported, as a significant number of contacts were with HCPs. The only thing I found odd about the social work involvement was in relation to the disagreement between the police and the LA as to whether Peter should be allowed to remain in the care of his mother. The police were against this plan and the LA made a very "messy" care plan in my view, that Peter was to be with a childminder during the day and a "family friend" was to supervise his care at home. Either a child is safe at home or he isn't and if there was a need to ensure that he was not to be left solely in the care of his mother, then in my view that should be grounds for requesting the court grant an EPO in the first instance. I am assuming the LA were paying the childminder, but what of the "family friend" - why did the LA assume that she would be able to ensure Peter was safe at home. Very odd. Presumably if she was to ensure Peter was not left in the sole care of his mother she would presumably have had to live in the house, and would therefore have known that there was a boyfriend living there and later on his brother joined the family.

I was interested to hear about the consultant paediatrician as it was reported that she had failed to diagnose that Peter had a fractured spine just days before his death, but it seems that there was some evidence that the injury to his spine could have been caused after the paediatrician's examination. Also of course she was not aware of the medical history in relation to Peter, and that was a glaring omission. Then there was the issue of shortage of consultant paediatricians at Great Ormond Street and the suggestion that the Conslt Paed in the case was not suitably qualified.

The role of OFSTED was shocking I thought. To give a rating of "good" after the death of Peter, only to change it to "inadequate" once the story broke beggars belief. I think Sharon S gave a detailed and very believable account of how OFSTED and the govt were colluding in the production of the final report.

Ed Balls (and I thought this at the time) was in my view pandering to the baying mob of the Sun readers in sacking Sharon S which I don't believe was within his remit. I was pleased when she won her case for unfair dismissal. It was distressing to hear about the death threats made to her and her daughter, and she was visibly upset when recalling these threats.

I think the police made mistakes too, as photographs of Peter's injuries were not taken, though I can't recall exactly what other mistakes (if any) they made.

Yes there was "passing the blame" but it was not difficult to see how Peter (and sadly many others before and after him) fell through the net. The thing that always frustrates the hell out of me is that every time there is a child death, someone from the LA (or more usually now the independent chair of the Safeguarding Conferences) talks about "learning the lessons" and the sad fact is that you can never eliminate risk - you would need to live with these families, and be on a rota around the clock, and how ridiculous is that............I don't understand why someone doesn't have the courage to make that point. It's small wonder that the public pillory social workers for not having "learned the lessons" - no matter how many "lessons are learned" children will sadly continue to be seriously harmed and killed by their parents/step-parents, and fewer and fewer social workers will chose to specialise in child protection and who can blame them. And no I don't think the social work degree course will make any difference to be honest because there will still be unmanageable caseloads and these newly qualified social workers will take a considerable time to gain the experience and resilience needed for child protection work. Experienced workers in the team won't have the time to offer assistance because of their own workload and team managers can only offer supervision on a monthly basis though should be available of course for consultation when it is needed.

Oh and as for Frontline Social Work (or whatever it's called) OJ supplied the link - as soon as I saw Gove on the picture I realised it was the social work equivalent of "Teach First" - his unshakeable view that all that was needed to teach were graduates with a 2.1 or above from a Russell Group University. One of my sons is a primary school teacher with 10 years experience and my DIL is a Deputy Head of a primary with 9 years experience and their experiences of these poor graduates being totally unable to control a class just makes me hate Gove with a passion.

I'm not surprised OJ that you didn't see the Baby P programme because it did nothing to support your conspiracy theory; on the contrary it demonstrated that Peter was not "removed by social workers and forcibly adopted" - a great pity.

Well I've spent far too long on this thread tonight, and I'm weary of trying to explain/clarify matters to OJ as it all falls on stoney ground. I know only too well that mistakes are made, and that is part of the human condition, but if Placement Orders are made (allowing a child to be adopted) then it is the Judge who made that decision, not the social workers or any other professional involved in the case.

One thing puzzles me, as a retired social worker and having studied psychology at UG and PG level I have always strived to understand as far as possible all aspects of human behaviour. However I have drawn a blank in trying to understand what drives the beliefs of OJ and others who hold the same views. Usually such prejudice has its roots in a conviction that they have been unjustly treated in some way and there is a desire to apportion blame and seek revenge, in an attempt to assuage their feelings of frustration or anger, but this rarely brings resolution and so the fight goes on .......and on..............

Spero Tue 04-Nov-14 22:31:13

Oh can I ask Spero why legal aid is being refused for parents in public law cases. I knew this was the case in private law and that is dreadful, but if it is not available in care proceedings that is indefensible. I read of one case in your CPR where a child was made subject to a Care Order but placed with parents and was subsequently removed and an application for a Placement Order was made and legal aid was refused to the parents on the basis of their financial standing. I was horrified when I read it and decided I must not have properly understood. Can you advise please

Parents in care proceedings will continue to get public funding on a non means and non merits basis - i.e. they can be very rich and have no chance of winning, but they will still get legal aid. Which is as it should be.

However, once a final care order is made, the test for funding switches back to means AND merits. So you have to be very, very poor and have a very good case to get any funding.

It's not a good system. In one case I had to wait two months for an appeal to get organised because that is how long it took to get funding sorted. The recent case which has caused all the fuss involves parents who wanted to challenge an adoption order and got no help with funding because they had some pathetic amount of disposable income. Munby was extremely scathing about that.

Spero Tue 04-Nov-14 22:27:57

I don't want to be closed minded and I hope my CPR post on forced adoption shows that.

But the Daily Mail and the Daily Telegraph are just not credible or helpful sources of information for this debate, they really aren't. Booker especially can have a court judgement open in front of him and still write an article that is just wrong on every level.

I am certainly not an apologist for the system. But I haven't seen a shred of credible evidence for 'adoption targets' leading to the removal of children from loving homes on no evidence.

I have seen plenty of evidence of a system crumbling and children suffering because of it, and that is where I would like our collective energies to be directed.

NanaNina Tue 04-Nov-14 22:12:59

OK OJ I do realise that sarcasm isn't helpful but I do tend to resort to this when I am very frustrated. Having spent some 25 years as a social worker and middle manager in a LA children's Services Dept., and 5 years as an independent social worker (mostly carrying out parental assessments on parents where the LA are in care proceedings) it is very frustrating to hear all this talk of "forced adoptions" and assertions made I suspect based on comments from aggrieved parents whose children have been removed from their parents by a court order. These accounts are then relayed by DM journalists and people in the "Forced Adoption" camp to provide "evidence" to support their conspiracy theory about babies being "taken" for "forced adoption." The missing part of course is the facts that are only known by the parties involved in the care proceedings and on which the Judge makes the final decision about the making of an Order or not, as these matters are quite rightly confidential.

I must take issue with you about comments you have made in your last post:

"there is a prescriptive attitude to how people should parent, that reasons to intervene are getting smaller and smaller and that whether it is the blame culture, incompetence or corruption, or a mix of all three, many adoptions should not happen that do. Systems may be set up with good intentions, but they are at the mercy of the humans that use them and people are very often corrupt."

I am assuming that it is your opinion that there is "a prescriptive attitude to how people should parent" and wonder on what basis your opinion is based. There are certain issues that need to be explored by anyone carrying out an assessment of parenting capacity and they include whether the child's needs are being met (or not) in all aspects of their development e.g. physical, emotional, educational, social etc. I can provide more detail on this if you so wish.

You then claim that "reasons to intervene are getting smaller and smaller" and I honestly don't know what you mean by this and again wonder on what basis you have formed this opinion. Social work intervention in terms of child protection can be for a variety of reasons, usually based on a referral of alleged abuse/neglect from a teacher, health visitor, relative, neighbour, anyone really - and many people want to remain anonymous, which is their right. A decision has to be made on the basis of the referral whether or not there is a need to investigate the allegation. Some referrals are vague and without any foundation and checks can be made with the school/nursery/health visitor etc and if there are no concerns then the matter is NFA'd (no further action) However social workers have a clear duty to investigate referrals that do not fit into the category I've mentioned. All social worker activity is quite rightly underpinned by legislation and the Children Act 1989 places a duty on social workers to work in partnership with parents, and this has to be the starting point, though the nature of the "partnership" will depend on the circumstances of the case. However there is also a duty to ensure that a child is not being "significantly harmed" or is "likely to suffer significant harm" (I think I gave examples of the latter term in an earlier post) so here the social worker enters the "muddy waters" of offering support to keep the family together on the one hand and ensuring that they are aware of when the concerns are increasing and it is time to take steps to protect a child, on the other hand. "Damned if they do and damned if they don't"

You comment "many adoptions shouldn't happen but do" - I don't think you are in a position to make this assertion as you are not in possession of all of the facts of a particular case, nor seen the entire court documentation (known as the court bundle) which is contained in a hefty level arch file and contains statements by all professionals involved in the case, together with statements from the parents, and anyone who makes a statement has to be cross examined as I have explained before. I think it's worth mentioning here that in all cases of care proceedings a Children's Guardian is appointed by the court (this is a social worker who is independent of the LA and employed by CAFCASS (Children and Family Court Advisory Support and Services) and their role is to carry out their own investigation of the case and they appoint a solicitor to act for the child. Believe me guardians do absolutely not always agree with the LA, and they are usually very influential in court.

I have carried out many parenting assessments commissioned by the Court as an independent social worker. This can happen if all parties and the Judge are in agreement that there is a need for such an independent report. It might interest you to know that there have been cases where I have not agreed with the LA's application for a Care/Placement Order (though this is in a minority of cases) and have obviously outlined my reasons in detail. In 3 of these cases I was not satisfied that the LA had not offered the parent(s) and child/ren the opportunity of a residential assessment and recommended that this should happen before a final decision was made.

OK I will try to answer the issues you raise:

I don't believe I have ever said that mistakes are never made - that would be naïve in the extreme. In a career spanning some 30 years I have seen social workers who are highly competent and others who are in the wrong job, and managers who lack the experience and competence to properly supervise their staff, and senior managers who unsurprisingly become divorced from the core business of social work, as their focus is on budgets etc. Of course I can see from the link you mentioned where a Judge returned children to the care of their parents, is one such case and of course the children will have been emotionally harmed and the family put through an enormous amount of distress. I did acknowledge this in another post. However mistakes are made in all organisations - medics make mistakes and people die as a result, the police make mistakes and again people die as a result, politicians make "mistakes" (the quotes are in relation to the expenses scandal) I am concerned about the fact that children are not removed early enough and are ill treated or even worse at the hands of their parents.

You are most definitely "preaching to the converted" when you talk of the scandal of children and young people being sexually abused in care homes. It is indeed a scandal and I don't believe any of us will ever really know the true horror of what happened in the past, and what was covered up and by whom, although the JS scandal has encouraged many victims to come forward. I say "in the past" because I think it is far less likely (though by no means impossible) that young people will be abused in care homes in this day and age. I can recall that sexual abuse did not really appear on the radar of social services until the mid 80s and then of course the floodgates opened, which is what happens when something hidden for generations emerges into the open. We discovered that sexual abuse was inter generational and it was very chilling - it seems strange now that we knew nothing about it for so many years.

I think children's homes in the past (often miles away from anywhere) and very little contact with their families were something of a "paedophile's paradise" especially when the Home Manager was one of the perpetrators. We now understand the profile of the paedophile and the predatory nature of these individuals. However there is no room for complacency in this respect.

Finally - and I apologise for the length of this post, I think Children's Services is in crisis due to a national shortage of experienced social workers, difficulties in recruitment and retention especially in child protection, high vacancy/sickness rates, low morale in the profession to name but a few of the problems. However I place most of the blame for this state of affairs clearly at the feet of Cameron and the Cabinet for slashing the budgets of all public services, and at the same time expecting improved services. Any fool can see that this can't be done.

Oh can I ask Spero why legal aid is being refused for parents in public law cases. I knew this was the case in private law and that is dreadful, but if it is not available in care proceedings that is indefensible. I read of one case in your CPR where a child was made subject to a Care Order but placed with parents and was subsequently removed and an application for a Placement Order was made and legal aid was refused to the parents on the basis of their financial standing. I was horrified when I read it and decided I must not have properly understood. Can you advise please?

0justice Tue 04-Nov-14 20:58:54

Well, I have always responded thoughtfully, I haven't simply posted links, I have posted at length (as even NanaNina has admitted). As to the provenance of the links, as I said before, there is no smoke without fire. All the links I provided, go hand-in-hand with multiple stories out there of parents who have suffered this, they can't all be lying and as I said a couple of posts up, people with something to hide (e.g. abuse or neglect) are hardly going to make waves about their case. So trashing the links (some of which are from broadsheet newspapers, and newspapers do have to be very careful what they print in case they are sued) is not the way to go either.

I think we have to remain open-minded about the root of the problem, to deny there is forced adoption or to deny that it could possibly be a conspiracy of some sort is to close doors to possibilities. Until the full truth is exposed we must consider it is an option. As I said, I have been party to the lies of social workers, outrageous ones, and several from one department, so yes, conspiracies do happen. Whether it extends as far as deliberate conspiracy with expert witnesses and lawyers remains to be seen, but there is most definitely a gravy train. If someone is paying you, you aren't going to want to give them the opposite of what they are paying for are you.

I didn't see that documentary, TBH I find those sorts of thing soul-destroyingly depressing, I am already more aware than I wish to be about the failings of the state and the corruption within the state, and sometimes it's just too damaging to not see any light in one's world view. You need to have a stop point.

Regarding Frontline, I don't have sufficient information to be able to comment either way, but I have seen this: www.communitycare.co.uk/2014/10/26/group-academics-criticises-frontline-evaluation-worrying-lack-clarity/?cmpid=NLC|SCSC|SCNEW-2014-1029

I think whatever is going on with the shifting of blame you refer to, there is most definitely a culture of blame within not only social services but medical and educational services within the UK. Parents are largely not respected, they are treated as the enemy and social services particularly go looking for blame, not looking for what they can provide to help people. There will always be exceptions to that of course and I'm not pretending there aren't, but despite the friendly face that some SWs present, that can be totally at odds with the lies they are recording in the background. I would urge all parents who feel uncomfortable, threatened or wrongly blamed by social services to get copies of their child's files under a Subject Access Request, and ensure to request that it includes all electronic and handwritten notes and communications too as well as logs of phone calls and running sheets. You need to know what you are fighting if it comes to it. If you find inaccuracies, incorrect statements or lies, you can get it put in writing on file and also get things corrected by complaining officially, contact the ICO if necessary and if complaining via the LA doesn't ensure remedy go to the LGO. I don't buy this attitude that opinions cannot be amended because they are opinions, if those opinions are being used in CP cases then it is vital that they are factually correct. There is no place for a blame culture, social services are just that services, and in the words of LJ Munby, they are servants not masters to those they are meant to support.

Spero Tue 04-Nov-14 18:10:34

Thanks for responding thoughtfully Ojustice. I do think this is a much better way to highlight issues of concern than simply throwing out a lot of links of dubious provenance.

So what do we do? I think we agree there is a problem, maybe we disagree about the root of the problem.

Did you see the Baby P documentary on the BBC on October 27th? Together with the Ray Jones book I found that a very worrying narrative about how the desire to shift blame has led to awful consequences for child protection - the move to a more 'muscular' system of child protection, rather than supporting families, but not giving SW the time, training or support to do a good job.

Do you think the push for getting more graduates into SW via the Frontline scheme is going to help at all?

0justice Tue 04-Nov-14 18:02:04

@Spero, I already stated the statistic was from the relevant link. It is therefore not my statistic. You are welcome to click the link and message the author/quoter and ask them.

My comments about bitterness/sarcasm were e.g. this comment by NanaNina "Now I don't want to confuse you OJ". (so no, NanaNina, it's got nothing to do with evidence but everything to do with how you present yourself).

I don't think it's all about "blonde haired and blue-eyes children", that may be comments by some at the more extremist end of views about forced adoptions.

Regarding your link: "It is further alleged that family courts are secret" in what way alleged - you know they are closed courts with gagging orders. I'm also not claiming categorically that "adoption targets" are the cause of the problem. But I do believe, that there is a moral panic scenario gripping countries such as the UK, there is a prescriptive attitude to how people should parent, that reasons to intervene are getting smaller and smaller and that whether it is the blame culture, incompetence or corruption, or a mix of all three, many adoptions should not happen that do. Systems may be set up with good intentions, but they are at the mercy of the humans that use them and people are very often corrupt. Money does, as they say, also make the world go round and if someone wants justification they will find it. I have personal experience of social workers grossly lying, and on record too. So I do know it happens. Reading many stories of others out there, with parallel experiences. "I reckon the error here..." not a scientific comment and the author admits to not having all the figures. This amounts to supposition. "Or we have a child protection system that is often inefficient and/or overwhelmed by case loads? where mistakes are made, but rarely due to deliberate malice?" Whatever the reason, it should NOT be happening! "But that of course does not mean the system is perfect. Far from it. If 80% of cases are ‘right’ we still have 20% which are not and that is worrying." Even by your own figures, that is extremely worrying. I haven't read the whole page, but enough to see that even you have concerns, it's just about denying the conspiracy element.

I do think that parents being denied legal aid puts them at a huge disadvantage. So if the LA ends up funding their lawyers, how can they be sure they are independent? How can they be sure they won't bite the hand that feeds them?

@NanaNina, then how do you explain the links I posted with cases where children were removed by the court decisions and later returned with another judge saying they should never have been removed (just for one example), amongst those links are cases where they were wrongly removed for periods such as 14 months?

I didn't comment either way as to any response to your question, although it is your prerogative to assume what you wish.

"What is it with you men" Strange comment seeing as I don't believe I have stated my gender.

"Of course it's emotionally harmful if children are removed from parents when it was not necessary, but I don't know of any actual cases, so I can't comment" but you are happy to comment that it doesn't happen and there is no problem with forced adoptions. Even if such an "error" happened in only one case, that is one family irretrievably damaged, a child growing up wondering what they did wrong to be ripped from their family and no guarantees that the family/home they are placed with won't actually be an abusive environment. You cannot undo that damage. What about the scores of children being sexually abused whilst in care homes? It's all been in the media and you know it has happened and you know cover-ups happened. So yes, state abuses are covered up, and denied all the time. So you are on shaky ground denying the forced adoption issue and may find you end up eating some humble pie.

Spero Tue 04-Nov-14 09:05:21

If you don't like the CPR site, here's another link for you.
www.theguardian.com/law/2014/oct/31/government-washing-hands-legal-aid-chris-grayling

Huge, huge problem that parents can't get legal aid in adoption cases, wouldn't you agree?
Or would you instead say that all lawyers in these cases are just 'legal aid losers' in bed with the LA?

Spero Tue 04-Nov-14 08:20:22

I don't intend to answer your unnecessary probes, they are not valid questions and not what I am posting about. Fishing is for fishermen. You're getting very bitter.

I think most people would agree the child protection is in crisis or heading towards crisis very quickly. I note the Kids company campaign See the Child, the recent decisions of the President of the Family Division about cuts to legal aid leaving families facing adoption proceedings with no legal help, the fact that Community Care reports the majority of social workers think they have unsafe levels of cases.

There is a vocal minority of people who insist however that the real reason the system is in crisis is because there is a government sponsored plot to steal blonde haired blue eyed babies from loving homes to meet adoption targets. A lot of energy is wasted pursuing this conspiracy theory.

Do you understand how frustrating it is to watch this waste of time and energy? And it isn't just a waste - it has nasty consequences for the desperate and vulnerable families who believe it and who go on to do something very stupid, like refuse to co-operate or leave the county.

I am not bitter. I am just fed up with it all. But thank you 0Justice and all the others like you because you did encourage me to put my energies to better use.

Will you read and comment upon this post?
www.childprotectionresource.org.uk/forced-adoption/

Can you tell me what we have got wrong there, what you don't agree with? What would you like us to include instead?

You see, if you are unable or unwilling to enter into a debate or you think a debate is posting links from 2008 written by Sue Reid in the Daily Mail, you are nothing to do with any solutions, you are just a big part of the problem.

NanaNina Tue 04-Nov-14 01:53:15

Well I have the answer to my Q OJ - as I suspected you have never been in Court to hear what actually goes on at a final hearing where all the evidence is heard and cross examinations take place and when the Judge makes a decision about whether to grant an Order or not. Pity. You might be surprised, because at least you would see how counsel for the parents fight their case with great rigour and determination (that is an observation not a criticism) and cross examine witnesses for significant periods of time (2/3 hours sometimes) in the hope that they can find flaws in the LA's case.

I don't understand your comment "so you don't think getting it wrong when social workers wrongly remove children is abusive or damaging to the children...?" You constantly talk of social workers wrongly removing children from their parents - I keep on telling you that social workers have:
no power whatsoever to remove children be it the right or wrong course of action

NB Only a court can grant an Order allowing children to be removed from their parents

Police can remove children under the terms of the Police Protection Order for a maximum of 72 hours, though in practice the child will either be returned home or the LA will apply to the court for an emergency protection Order (EPO) and they will need to have evidence to support their application and the parents will be present and will be entitled to legal representation.

Of course it's emotionally harmful if children are removed from parents when it was not necessary, but I don't know of any actual cases, so I can't comment, though I am aware that this can happen in a minority of cases. ALL professionals make mistakes from time to time.

We are now being accused of "getting bitter" - I think you mean that we are asking for you to provide evidence for your assertions which you are unable to do of course. Posting links detailing alleged "miscarriages of justice" don't prove anything because we are only hearing one side of the story, and of course parents are aggrieved when a Judge makes a decision that the child will not be safe if he/she is returned home and will complain to whoever will listen. And there are lots of "willing ears" - John Hemming, Christopher Booker, Ian Joseph, Brendan Fleming and you, and many others no doubt. What is it with you men. It's all a bit creepy in my opinion. The LA Children's Services cannot of course give their side of the story because of the need for strict confidentiality which is wholly right, but it does mean that anyone can post all sorts of inaccurate information, without a shred of evidence, and people who read the DM and the tabloids will believe every word.

Spero Tue 04-Nov-14 00:25:26

Sorry, its very difficult to follow all your links.

Where do you get that statistic from? I simply don't believe it. Who has calculated that statistic?

Help me out.

0justice Tue 04-Nov-14 00:15:18

@Spero, that was clearly a quote from the link above it. I'm not responsible for the link or it's contents, just raising awareness of it's existence so people can make up their own minds. That's not a question either!

@NanaNina - so you don't think getting it wrong when SWs wrongly remove children is abusive or damaging to the children? I've heard it all now.

As for posting links - what are you so afraid of?

I don't intend to answer your unnecessary probes, they are not valid questions and not what I am posting about. Fishing is for fishermen. You're getting very bitter. In fact so bitter that you're continuing to ignore the actual point of what I said about not answering everything I have pointed out and instead are just resorting to sarcasm as the lowest form of defence...tut tut. Like I said, have some wine

NanaNina Mon 03-Nov-14 20:27:58

Come on OJ stop looking for links and answer the 2 questions. Mine's a really easy Q but you might have a bit more difficulty with Spero's as evidence isn't one of your strong points is it..........maybe you're hoping for more posts and then you can say you're not "going to bother trawling back" ........

NanaNina Mon 03-Nov-14 18:42:14

Well now OJ that's not a complicated question is it. I look forward to your response, without any more links.

On the question of links I note that you have included one by Christopher Booker. He details comments made by Lynn Boleyn a former local councillor in Dudley and states she became concerned about forced adoption when she sat on many committees on child care. He states that "she was in court recently with a mother of 5 children" and goes on to detail how the children were removed by a court without good reason. I've googled her and her concerns are based on the fact that 6 families contacted her when she was a councillor whose children had been removed by the Court and the LA had initiated care proceedings. Ms Bolyen states:

"I am convinced that those families were well able to properly care for their children..........." now call me an old cynic but I have to wonder just how Ms Bolyen arrived at that conclusion, given that she never actually saw the children in the company of their parents, and was in any event in no position to be able to assess whether in fact the children were being significantly harmed. Believe it or not the assessment of parenting capacity is a very skilled task, and sometimes social workers unsurprisingly get it wrong, but by leaving children too long in homes where they are not safe NOT by taking the wrong *children.

I intend to contact Ms Boleyn to see why as an ex councillor she sees fit to pass details of cases to Christopher Booker - there is quite a lot of detail including the ages and geographical location of the families and I consider this could be a serious breach of confidentiality.

Now I don't want to confuse you OJ as Spero has already asked you one question, but here's another:

Q: Have you ever been in court for the final hearing of a case where the LA have made application for a Care/Placement Order. These cases often take 4/5 days, where all of the evidence is heard from all professionals involved in the case, and cross examined by counsel for the parents.

A Yes or NO answer will do.

If Yes - On what basis were you present in court?

Spero Mon 03-Nov-14 17:53:43

Ok, answer just this one question.

You claim 50 children a week die in care.

Please identify the source of this statistic. Its not one I am familiar with. I am however familiar with the NSPCC statistic about the number of children who die each week at home, at the hands of a parent or carer.

0justice Mon 03-Nov-14 17:25:19

Furthermore, it has also happened in Australia www.abc.net.au/am/content/2011/s3328313.htm so why state that it couldn't possibly be happening here?

theconversation.com/uk/topics/forced-adoption

theconversation.com/we-remove-kids-from-abuse-and-neglect-but-are-they-better-off-in-the-long-run-32686

philthompsonfamily.wordpress.com/2014/03/17/packaging-un-believable-facts-about-child-care-and-forced-adoptions-for-meps-and-press-in-brussels/

Back to the UK: www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1265416/Glimmer-hope-parents-court-halts-forced-adoption-18-month-old-daughter.html
^"Social workers behaved like officials in 'Stalin's Russia or Mao's China' in attempting to remove children from loving mothers, senior judges have said.

They warned that social workers in two separate cases tried to put children in foster care without giving their mothers a proper chance to prove they were fit parents."^

akashictimes.co.uk/parents-launch-petition-against-forced-adoption/

^"Over 50 children die each week in care." "The UK is the only country to restrict conversation between parents and children in care and gag parents whose children have been taken into care.

This is even acknowledged on the government website parliament.co.uk. Britain is also the country in Europe (apart from Croatia and Portugal) to tolerate the practice of forced adoption."^

Why else do you think there is such an outcry and petitions being started? Do you think all those parents were abusers who just couldn't admit the truth? Guilty people with something to hide don't usually make a fuss.

0justice Mon 03-Nov-14 17:16:36

Rather than having to scan through several long posts to pick out odd questions, if someone can post one short reply with a summary of your questions, if I am able to answer them I will.

Until then, this tiresome belief that I am JH or connected to him or any other of these people I have never heard of, will be summarily ignored as pie-in-the-sky conspiracy theories based on the erroneous belief that only JH and a tiny contingent of others believe or suspect that there is a problem with forced adoptions.

One that I believe was asked was whether I care about the abused children who could not be adopted due to lack of resources. The answer is of course I do, but as I have previously said, if LAs spent less time investigating and persecuting innocent parents then there would automatically be additional resources for the genuinely abused children, even if it didn't make enough to save all of them. I would also question whether LAs are properly investigating and accepting the suitability of extended family members or family friends to adopt or care for some of those children, either short or long term. I would also question whether if families with children at risk of abuse or neglect were given the right support at the right time, this would also ameliorate a substantial number of tragic cases. There will always be some circumstances where parents are just unfit to parent, will always be unfit and no amount of support will change that and there are no family members to take over the parenting of their children so adoption is likely the only option. But not only are the justifications for adopting becoming smaller and smaller, but they are being abused by the might of the state which relies on the human element to get it right. Here are some more links:

www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/columnists/christopherbooker/7870342/Forced-adoption-is-a-truly-dreadful-scandal.html

www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/law-and-order/7931828/Britains-forced-adoptions-the-hidden-scandal-we-cant-ignore.html

www.ibtimes.co.uk/forced-adoption-uk-child-protection-punishment-without-crime-1458364

www.childrenscreamingtobeheard.com/

www.forcedadoptionexposed.com/blog/#.VFZsUclFuyN

I also reiterate what I said further up the thread, there are some decent SWs out there, but nowhere near enough and it is a risk as to whether someone ends up with a decent one or not, so people should protect themselves by having witnesses and recording everything for their protection. There are just way too many people having shocking experiences with social services that shouldn't be happening. So whilst people should not be entirely dissuaded from seeking social care help if they need it, they should definitely protect themselves and not be naive, just like wearing a life jacket when on board a boat. I haven't tried to scare anyone, just to warn people to take those aforementioned steps, having to reply constantly to people intent on ridiculing JH and other people (who I have no comment either way on, so why people are intent on attacking him I have no idea because I won't be mounting any defence) has distracted from that fact and it has become a fiasco of some people insisting I am JH or someone connected to him. I would further point out that there have been points I have made and links I have posted which also have not been responded to, so it goes both ways. I can't be bothered to feed back through the thread to pick them out, but I wasn't the one who started commenting on not answering questions.

Spero Mon 03-Nov-14 14:14:29

That's a brilliant idea ichimoi. I have been trying to persuade someone who has posted some truly shocking stuff about this firm on facebook, to go public but she is trying to get her children back, so I accept that's a big ask.

But if the website is that bad, a complaint is in order - I will go ferreting...

Icimoi Mon 03-Nov-14 14:06:46

Nana, if Brendan Fleming's website is seriously misleading, might it be worth reporting it to the Law Society?

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now