i think we are resigning.

(18 Posts)
fostermumtomany Mon 15-Apr-13 20:26:03

well after a lot of hassle recently from ss we have started talking about resigning. we had some allegations made about us by a friend of mine, (she has nothing to do with fostering), she rang our team and told a pack of lies about us. we found out today when our ssw came out to discuss them with us. what got me was that she said we will have to have an emergency review before it goes back to panel!!!
what?! its clear the allegations she made are fabricated and our ssw knows that she has lied but as a complaint has been made they have to act. I understand that. I even agree with it but panel???

she also said that we had had an overpayment of over £5000!!! I think we would have noticed that don't you, it hasn't been going into my bank nor has it been mentioned on my advice slips. yet some admin in finance says it shows on our records?!

I have hundreds of little niggles with my la and these are the ones that have pushed me over the edge.
I love fostering, I honestly do but im sick of the all the crap that comes with it. I mean when do they ever say you did a good job, well done?

its only the negative that speak to you about. especially made up crap from people who have no idea what they are talking about!!!

my ssw even said I would have to pay back this overpayment despite my never having had it. I even showed her my bank statements.
im sick to death of social services. why cant they just let us look after these babies without all the crap from everyone else?

so for me I think that's it. I think I shall ring her tomorrow and tell her we are done.
what will happen to the lo we have now? he hasn't even had his final court hearing yet!

musickeepsmesane Mon 15-Apr-13 23:31:28

sorry to read about all the crap you are having to put up with. We do a job that is constantly undervalued. I think the £5000 is weird, shouldn't they be showing you their paperwork to prove overpayment?? We have had an emergency review and it is such a waste of time, everyone knew it yet we all had to go through the hoops. I feel like you a lot of the time, it really pisses me off when my SW tries to parent my foster kids I don't do her job and pisses me off even more to hear my SW say AGAIN "I hear what you are saying" I hope you wake up in the morning stronger and ready to face all these jobsworths again. flowers

Panadbois Tue 16-Apr-13 12:04:39

I feel your pain.

Very frustrating and I don't blame you at all. Our LA is in a hell of a state at the moment and no one is supported. Lots of FC thinking of resigning because of it and other serious issues.
We're having a FC Assoc. meeting tomorrow and head of services will be there. I wouldn't like to be in his shoes.

NotmylastRolo Tue 16-Apr-13 13:11:21

FMTM - Our thoughts are with you and hope that you can move forwards through this. It is often just one small thing that breaks you in the end.

We are also resigning. Similar to you we have had repeated episodes of poor and unacceptable treatment. We have one teen in placement, about to move to supported lodgings, and as soon as he moves on we will resign.

There is a blame culture that pervades our LA from the Service Manager throughout the SW's. If any foster carer dares to raise issues or ask for services (respite for personal bereavement, CAMHS for a child,) they certainly feel the disapproval of our fostering service team and management. All issues like poor performance at school or fighting are blamed on the foster carers and this attitude underpins our LA. We have had enough. We have lovely foster carers but most live in fear of upsetting our LA and I cannot work or live like this. Our LA is sloppy, the SW's are always either on holiday or off sick, and there is such a poor attitude when we raise issues of dysfunctional behaviours shown by foster children that we are sure would benefit from some help.

It is really sad that it is not the children causing us to re-think our future but our dysfunctional LA and their blame culture and awful manager.

imgoingtoresigntoo Tue 16-Apr-13 20:49:44

Well, what a happy lot we are all... sad

Count us in ... we are going to resign too...

I am sick of Social Services - sick of Social Workers lying to cover their own incompetent backsides - quite happily putting the blame for everything on us....

Sick of taking all of these kicks and daring to make my feelings known to the powers 'that be'....

sad

fostermumtomany Wed 17-Apr-13 12:41:55

now they have stopped all respite placements unless you have to go into hospital or a close relative dies.
this is disgusting.
im don't now, im so done.
im also heartbroken as I love these kids, and I feel like im letting them down but I cant put up with all this crap anymore.
how can we not have respite? and what about those carers who provide respite, they are going to be out of a job!!!!

NotmylastRolo Wed 17-Apr-13 19:38:40

I think I heard recently that nurses freshly out of uni who were said to be "too posh to wash" needed to spend a year on the wards doing basic patient care like bedpans and bed washes before being let loose in charge of patients.

What about fostering social workers doing the same and fostering for a year! That way they may have a basic understanding of how hard the job of fostering is and how their awful and sometimes cruel decisions impact on foster carers.

FMTM - It really is the poor attitude that pervades the fostering service that causes the lack of foster carers and resignation of existing foster carers. Foster carers would understand that money was tight if we were treated respectfully and asked for our cooperation with the cut backs. After all we are recruited for being good people, and fair and flexible. Instead we have a defensive and hostile LA who are cutting services with a snarl and bad attitude. Our friends and family used to say "wish we could foster, it must be wonderful". Now they say "we could not put up with the sh*t you do from social services".

No respite. No services for foster children. We are resigning too. It is not fun anymore.

JeanBodel Wed 17-Apr-13 19:42:00

Can I just say that not all Local Authorities are the same. I am sorry you have had such terrible experiences, but there are some LAs out there who look after their foster carers.

NotmylastRolo Thu 18-Apr-13 10:25:58

JB - that is heartening to hear. I know that individually SW's do try and do a good job. Sadly, eventually we have seen for ourselves that the gooduns appear to be ground down by the system and then they take on the attitude of their own management structure towards foster carers, which is poor to say the least.

Just as a matter of interest do you have respite given on the rare occasion you ask? Will your LA give consideration to any services that would benefit your fostered child or are you made to feel bad for even asking and then are knocked back quite abruptly as you are not an "expert" so what would you know?

I have spoken to fellow foster carers in our LA who refuse to let social services know of major changes in their families (like births, deaths or changes of jobs where husband works away) as they feel that these "changes" are used to blame foster carers for any issues the foster child presents with.

I am really pleased for you that you have a good fostering service. We had such promises and high hopes from the training but the reality is proving to be less than even satisfactory, let alone being safe. Maybe your LA could roll out their good practice to other LA's who are not so good.

plainjayne123 Thu 18-Apr-13 12:12:20

Our LA treats FCs well in our experience. I don't think everyone gets respite, if would depend on ths child. We do but that is because our child is disabled and requires a high level of card and we have other birth children.

fasparent Mon 22-Apr-13 14:53:30

28 years service and still counting. advise contact OFSTED, can be quite helpful and can compromise changes.

NanaNina Thu 25-Apr-13 22:45:33

Ah this is very sad reading. I spent 25 years as a socialworker and for the last 15 years I was a tm mgr for a Fostering & Adoption team. I have been retired from LA work since 2004. My team was experienced and committed and we all championed the rights of foster carers. Of course there were difficulties along the way, but I know we all did our level best to handle such matters with sensitivity.

We often had to bring the child's social worker into line, as their expectations of foster carers were sometimes totally unrealistic. Some of the younger social workers who had no children of their own, failed to understand child development and again we had to "educate" them as best we could.

I worked for a shire county so we didn't have the same workload as the inner cities, but fostering and adoption were under resourced back then and this was always a problem. However since this govt came in, LAs budgets have been slashed, making it almost impossible to run a service. I am told by ex colleagues that it is now almost intolerable to to try to provide a good service to children, their families, and foster carers. Apparently all the buildings have been sold off and social workers are sitting in car parks on their laptops, trying to work!

Vacant posts are frozen because the LA can't afford to pay them, so workers in post are often trying to carry unmanageable workloads, and this is in a shore county. I live near Birmingham and Birmingham City Council is on the brink of bankruptcy because of the huge savings the govt is insisting they make. Of course these budget cuts are having to be made in all public services.

I'm not trying to blame bad, incompetent practice on budget cuts, but I can't help but think that there must be some link somewhere along the line. Foster carers are like gold dust and there is a national shortage and has been for many years, and to hear that good experienced carers are resigning is a great worry.

fostermumtomany Wed 01-May-13 01:50:15

we have to have a meeting with manager next week. that's all I know. we haven't been given any info on why or what etc. I don't know who else will be there or what it will entail.
if I feel its a witch hunt my resignation will be given in at that point. its all written ready to go. I just need to date it.
I just cannot believe they are taking these allegations seriously. especially when the allegations are known to be false. without going into specifics, all I can say is everytime this issue arose we reported it to our ssw and the childs sw. so why it Is now an issue is beyond me.
they are still insisiting we had this overpayment despite our bank writing a letter (at a cost of £25) stating no payments of that amount have ever gone into our account, despite them seeing our bank statements that show no money has been paid, they still say we had it!!??
I don't know what else to do now.
I am however thinking that they are not following procedure. I thought we were supposed to have an urgent review with our ssw and a reviewing officer but nope straight in front of the manager and then in all likelihood back to panel. im not going to go to panel. im just not. its ludicrous. I have done nothing wrong, my ssw knows I haven't, the woman who made the allegation has attempted to withdraw it stating that she had a personal issue with me and acted out of anger but my manager wont retract it. its all a farce. like I said I feel like its a witch hunt.
has this happened to anyone else?

purpleloosestrife Mon 13-May-13 19:34:32

I feel for you.

I'm also resigning as soon as my LO leaves. My SSW have been great, but the adoption team has been an utter nightmare. Don't want to ever go through that again.

Roshbegosh Tue 14-May-13 06:00:58

Sorry purple, did you get through an adoption then?
I am dealing with utterly inefficient SSW and team, I know they are busy blah blah blah but if we were as rubbish as them there would be trouble.

lougle Tue 14-May-13 07:21:14

I can't comment on the rest of it, but there is no way I'd be paying that money without a court order.

purpleloosestrife Tue 14-May-13 20:15:55

Rosh - haven't quite got through it yet. Despite having "twin-tracked" or whatever it is called and despite having 3 families wanting my LO ....the adoption team couldn't organise a piss up in a brewery we are STILL waiting. Every week month goes by with new excuses from them and my LO is still wanting a forever mummy. At an age now where every day means a stronger bond to us, and the adoptive family will be missing first steps, first words.....

I have been promised a planning meeting though grin

Roshbegosh Tue 14-May-13 22:05:13

That is such a shame, really. Are they deciding between the families? They never do operate with a sense of urgency, or even act at all IME but just let things get to crisis point. Then they all jump up and down. I do hope your LO gets placed soon and that they pick the right family. At least LO is happy with you.

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