Italian adoption case III

(1000 Posts)
Juliet123456 Sat 07-Dec-13 09:29:07

The last thread says all I need to know about those in the system. It also the most legally dangerous thread I have ever seen on mumsnet. I hope someone has been through the posts for libel risk. It also entirely one sided and biased and makes me laugh.

The defensiveness of those involved in this area will hopefully disappear once we have the openness that JH and indeed many others are seeking and obtaining as the judges increasingly accept that it helps everyone to understand what are very difficult decisions - parents, children and lawyers and social workers and expert witnesses in this field.

It will continue to be important always to get to the facts and where possible publish the facts. I continue to believe that almost any of us could have our children removed if the state set its mind to that. If publishing more decisions and giving rights to parents and those involved and the children to write what they like on twitter, facebook and the like and to let parents and children even when separated communicate and talk about any issues they choose will help then let us hope the law continues down that course.

CarpeVinum Sat 07-Dec-13 10:11:09

I continue to believe that almost any of us could have our children removed if the state set its mind to that

And why would the state set its mind to that ?

Where is the benefit to state or state agency to create work and potential for trauma where there are no grounds to offset the aformentioned ?

If people are going to work themselves up in a conspiracy theory the very least they could is provide a rational (ie not lizard people related) explanation as to why the state percives an advantage to removing children from perfectly adequate or good parents and placing the children with foster/adoptive parents. How does this generate income for the state that compensates for the expense of the process ? If not an economic gain, what is the human profit in taking children from OK-excellent family settings and placing them in fostering/adoptive process ?

If the gov is assumed to have a "we must do our bit for people who wish to adopt and create a steady steam of adoptable babies" mindset, surely it would have been be cheaper and more effective for them to work on reducing access to abortion and birth control while cutting the additional benefits (tax credits, child benefit etc) that relate to having children ?

johnhemming Sat 07-Dec-13 10:29:22

spero asked this question on the previous thread:
"Every time JH pops up on a thread like this I am going to ask him the same question - where is the proof that LA now or ever were paid a bounty for every baby they took into care?"

I have never said this. I did say that Local Authorities were rewarded financially for increasing the numbers of adoptions.

Does she deny this?

I have a spreadsheet of all of the payments made as well as the additional funding for adoption that was given (which could only be used for adoption).

CarpeVinum Sat 07-Dec-13 11:08:19

I did say that Local Authorities were rewarded financially for increasing the numbers of adoptions.

... of children in care.

In other words there was a (now scrapped ?) policy to increase the number of children that were adopted out of care rather than left laguishing long term in it.

Given how that element brings a certain clarity to the intension behind the scheme it comes across as being a little unwilling to provide a full and clear picture when you fail to include it when refering to the policy.

What you appear to be claiming is that SW, (with wide spread collusion from the police, medical profession and the judicery) have for years gone on a rampage of snatching children from adequate-excellent family settings solely to earn their LA bonuses via false means, with increased economic and human cost (by wontonly placing children needlessly in care with the intent to adopt them out, claim improved stats and get their LA a bonus).

And in all this time various goverments and shadow governments, jam packed with individual MPs in contact with their constituants, haven't noticed any of the above mass conspiracy to cause grave harm in order to gain monies by decpetion.

Apart from you.

claw2 Sat 07-Dec-13 11:15:42

The state could set its mind to it, if you have a disabled children with mental health issues and you are fighting to have their educational needs met, for example. Involving CP in SEN Tribunal cases to try and discredit parents is a tool some LA's use.

Why? maybe because it is cheaper for LA's. Why? maybe because as many self confessed professionals in these threads have admitted to having no knowledge of SEN's or SEN Tribunals, so why get involved.

Maryz Sat 07-Dec-13 11:18:41

Yes, they increased the number of adoptions for the children already in care.

Isn't that a good thing?

Now another question:

Lilka posted on Fri 06-Dec-13 15:55:06

Ian Josephs beliefs and quotes. Judge him on this. Sorry its a long list:

on the sexual abuse issue

1. "Think very carefully before you report a violent partner(especially if the abuse is only verbal) or even a sexual molester(especially if the children beg you to say nothing) as once social workers or police are involved you risk losing your children for "failing to protect them"

2. "NEVER contact social services (child protection) for help or advice. You should consider very carefully before you report a partner who batters you or even a stranger who sexually assaults your young child, as if you do the SS will as often as not take your children into care (and later for adoption) to "protect them" from risk!"

idiotic advice and statements

1. When outraged lawyers,judges,and social workers accuse me of "meddling in complex family cases without knowing all the facts" My reply is to repeat once again that FORCED ADOPTION is always wrong no matter what the facts

2. NON MOLESTATION ORDERS :- can forbid a mother from molesting her own daughter !

3. Long term fostercare(until age 18) should only be ordered if approved by a jury.

4. Closed adoption should never take place without parental consent.

5. The ss are your enemies ,so ignore their threats and refuse their instructions ESPECIALLY IF THEY TELL YOU TO SPLIT UP FROM YOUR PARTNER as that way they can attack a single parent much more easily than a united couple. ! The more you "cooperate" with them the more likely you are to lose your children later !

6. Often alas you will have to sack your lawyers and represent yourself simply because they will not let you speak in court

7. BEWARE the "Official Solicitor" ! If you get too upset or too excited the judge may decide you are not capable of instructing a solicitor or representing yourself and will appoint this parasite to represent you instead.He is by law forbidden to put on a case for you as his job is simply to agree with the "SS" ,to refuse to let you speak, and ensure that you lose your precious children without being allowed to say a word !!

8. To cap it all social workers only too often, go round schools and friends of parents and,by their loaded questions spread harmful rumours about the parents

9. family courts should be criminal courts

10. "What about Baby P? " I hear you cry !Well, physically injured children like baby P,Victoria Climbé,and others are not good adoption material .They are in any case avoided like the plague if there is a brutal and often drunken boyfriend or stepfather on the premises to intimidate the social workers. Such children are more often than not, callously left to die !Meanwhile social workers move on to easier targets and accuse respectable and more compliant parents (especially single mothers)of posing a "risk of emotional abuse" to their children, and even to their unborn babies !That is how the "SS" work now

11. NO CHILD SHOULD BE FORCIBLY TAKEN INTO CARE FROM A PARENT UNLESS THAT PARENT HAS COMMITTED or HAS BEEN CHARGED WITH A CRIME AGAINST A CHILD. All such cases would then commence in the criminal courts WITH THE RULES OF EVIDENCE AND STANDARDS OF PROOF OF THE CRIMINAL COURTS including the right to ask for a hearing by jury if the possible sentence was severe.If the verdict returned is "not guilty" or if charges were dropped the children should be returned immediately

12. Broken bones,cigarette burns,a child's complaints (not anonymous tipoffs!) of sexual abuse,should all be looked at by independent medical experts.It is however very rare that parents who abuse or allow this sort of abuse ever dare to come to court to beg for the return of children they probably detest! (*that last sentence is absolute bollocks*)

quotes on adoption

1. IF the "SS" threaten to take your children for adoption,make sure they never forget you !
Hug them tight "at last contact" so the ss cannot take them away easily.
Tell them wicked people are stealing them for money ,say "no" to adoption by nasty people as you are their real mummy !

2. If your child is about to be freed for adoption and the adopters are put in a separate court so you cannot see them or identify them persuade a friend to hang about the corridor tables outside the court room looking busy but ready to follow the adopters to find out who they are and where they live! Do everything you possibly can to avoid losing contact altogether.

3. Make sure you hold them tight to stop interuptions when you tell the children that "wicked people have stolen them for money and that you will never stop fighting to get them back" ! Whisper this in their ears or calmly make the statement out loud in spite of horrified supervisors who may then try to shout you down !Even children as young as 3 will remember all their lives such a brutal but necessary message. Vital however it is, as it will eventually make a stable adoption impossible to sustain !

4. If you find your adopted child 's address or school MAKE FACE TO FACE contact immediately !Do NOT SEND EMAILS OR CARDS IN ADVANCE or make any phone calls that could warn the adoptive parents and send them to court for an injunction !

I am asking you again. Do you agree with him? If not will you disassociate yourself from his views and his advice. And will you tell people his advice is dangerous?

Maryz Sat 07-Dec-13 11:19:19

I don't expect an answer by the way, I expect JH will be too busy to reply.

Sounds awful doesn't it? Trying to get more children out of temp care into permanent adoption, how evil are they? hmm

claw2 Sat 07-Dec-13 11:38:34

To the person who said "claw2 I think you are one of the people on the thread who still believes the irrational claims made by JH"

As I have stated I had no idea who JH or the other guy was until these threads. My views are based on my experience and the experience of many others I know.

"The sums that you quote that are awarded to LAs for reaching adoption targets are in respect of children already in the care system who are placed with short term foster homes or even in a residential children's home, they arenot in respect of how many children are coming into the system"

As far as I know (and I have freely admitted to only reading about this yesterday) it run from 2000 until 2008, surely new children were admitted to the care system during this time?

"Everyone involved in these matters is of the view that children who cannot be returned to the care of their parents deserve to be placed in a permanent family who will care for them throughout their childhood and young adulthood and who will remain a "family of resource" to them throughout their lifetime. Adoption is one of the best ways of securing a child's future on a permanent basis and this is why an additional grant is made to LAs who are reaching the targets"

As I pointed out previously in my experience this is not always the case, some professionals including social workers, have great difficulty distinguishing from 'in need of' and 'at risk of', where special needs and mental health issues are concerned as they have no knowledge of it.

"Incidentally Claw2 the money goes into the LAs Children's Services budget, it isn't shared out between social workers who have managed to "snatch" the highest number of children and get then forcibly adopted. Incidentally this term "forced adoption" is quite ridiculous because in all my 30 years as a social worker and middle manager in Children's Services I have rarely come across birth/step-parents who have agreed that their child should be adopted, and I would imagine this is the experience of other professionals in the field. Sometimes they have "voted with their feet" in the sense that they have not attended any of the court hearings dealing with the future of their child/ren."

Great pressure is put on professionals to 'protect' their budget and they have been known to spend money allocated for one thing on something completely different. Like SEN budget for a new basketball court for example. I am not suggested that no child ever needs to be adopted, just that they don't ALWAYS get it right.

Maryz Sat 07-Dec-13 11:43:50

Yes, more children came into care.

But they weren't taken into care in order to meet adoption targets as JH states.

claig Sat 07-Dec-13 11:47:00

Good point, CarpeVinum, from what I have googled in the press, it would appear to be quite different. It appears that social workers are not doing those things, but that pressure comes from much higher up the chain.

From googling some press articles, the push for adoption in general seems more to do with government than any social workers or family court lawyers.

"Martin Narey said that social workers try “too hard” to keep children with their biological parents rather than taking them into care where their needs might be better addressed.

His remarks, which have sparked a debate about how far the state should be allowed to intervene"

www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/6146430/Barnardos-chief-Martin-Narey-calls-for-children-to-be-taken-away-from-failed-parents-at-birth.html

Martin Narey is the government's adoption tsar. He was the Director General of the Prison Service of England and Wales between 1998 and 2003 and later on became the Chief Executive Officer of Barnardo's before stepping down in January 2011. He is not a social worker and had not worked in adoption and some care workers were quite critical

"Since Community Care first broke the news that Martin Narey was tipped to become the government’s first adoption tsar, our messages boards and emails have barely stopped buzzing. The outspoken former Barnardo’s chief has a reputation for causing controversy – his 2009 comments that social workers should take more children into care were widely criticised – and it is fair to say that he was not a universally popular choice for the role. Community Care readers have complained that Narey, a former prison service chief, is not a social worker and has never worked in adoption.

But it was Narey’s recent report on adoption, commissioned by and published by The Times, that really divided opinion. Among his wide-ranging recommendations, Narey urged local authorities to increase their adoption numbers, warning that those who failed to do so would be named and shamed, and said social workers should spend less time assessing “unsuitable” family and friends carers.

Social workers despaired at what they believed was an “aggressively pro-adoption stance”, which stereotyped them as anti-adoption, while family lawyers warned that reducing the time spent assessing family and friends carers would breach a child’s right to family life."

www.communitycare.co.uk/2011/07/14/adoption-tsar-martin-narey-answers-his-critics/#.UqL3EqLuP3c

"More children should be taken aware from their parents at birth to prevent them being brought up in “completely broken ” families, the chief executive of the charity Barnardo’s has said."

...

"He said his views represented “illiberal heresy” in social services circles where there remains a determination to give “failed” parents a second chance.

“We just need to take more children into care if we really want to put the interests of the child first,” he said.

“We can't keep trying to fix families that are completely broken .

“It sounds terrible, but I think we try too hard with birth parents... If we really cared about the interests of the child, we would take children away as babies and put them into permanent adoptive families, where we know they will have the best possible outcome.”

...

I never thought I would agree with Ed Balls, but I think he is right that more time and money and effort should be spent on trying to fix broken families rather than making what may be rushed decisions

"But Ed Balls, the Children’s Secretary, said: “I don't think the right thing to do in these cases is immediately to put children into care.

“The right thing to do is to say can we sort out the problems in that family?”

Tim Loughton, the Conservative shadow children’s minister said: “Martin seems to have this predetermination that kids are destined to be problem kids and I don’t agree with that.

“The bottom line is that the people who know best how to look after their children are the parents of those children.

“There will be a small number of cases where clearly they are not up to it but Martin … sees a far greater role the state as being corporate parents , I just look at the record of the state and it is appalling.”

www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/6146430/Barnardos-chief-Martin-Narey-calls-for-children-to-be-taken-away-from-failed-parents-at-birth.html

However, it is expensive to try and fix broken families.

'The right thing to do is to say, "Can we sort out the problems in that family?" '

Mr Balls called for more intensive intervention projects. Such projects are based on trials carried out in Dundee in Scotland which proved that some families could be helped at very high cost - £50,000 for each successful family - but that no impression was made on children in half of the families targeted.

The average age at which a child was adopted last year was four. Only one in 20 children taken into state care each year is under 12 months .

Patricia Morgan, a researcher and author on families and adoption, said: 'It has been clear for many years that adoption is highly successful and relatively cheap."

'But each time the Government has tried to act to get more adoptions, the effort has been buried, with the social work establishment and its supporters talking about poor mothers being stigmatised and the need for more resources to help the deprived.'

www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1211611/Stop-trying-fix-families-fix-Barnardos-heads-heretic-bad-parents-lose-children.html

...

It seems that the Times had a campaign to fix a broken adoption system and asked Martin Narey to contribute, and it seems that the government approached him to "take on the role of official adviser on adoption"


"Picture this. Social workers going into homes, removing children at birth from mothers they deem unsuitable and then fast-tracking them for adoption with families who themselves have undergone a "drive-through" style home study. Of course, this is not what the Times is suggesting in its campaign to "fix a broken British adoption system". But at times, it doesn't feel far off.

The newspaper's campaign is right to call for the speed of the adoption process to be increased and to boost the number of successful adoptions from around 3,000 a year. Latest statistics show that on average, it takes two years seven months for a child to be adopted, while the statistics show we have hit a record low in numbers. This is unacceptable and should put fire in all our bellies. But the newspaper reaches hasty conclusions and suggests oversimplified solutions. This matters because the campaign has David Cameron's firm backing. It was while Martin Narey, former head of Barnardo's, was researching his report for the Times about his new-found interest that the government approached him to take on the role of official adviser on adoption.

Only this week, Cameron made the naive decision to promise tough action on councils who fail to speedily place children in their care with adoptive parents. Those that are named and shamed in the government's new performance tables may be stripped of their responsibilities for adoptions altogether, he said. But by lowering morale, he is likely to create a sense of hopelessness that leads to poor retention and recruitment of good social workers and quickly becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. In any case, Hackney – the east London borough that comes bottom of the new tables, placing only 43% of children with adoptive parents within 12 months of a decision to do so – has one of the best records of stability within adoptions. Meanwhile, other low-performing councils such as Croydon handle large numbers of asylum-seeking children."

www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2011/nov/01/the-times-adoption-campaign

...

This is from an article by Martin Narey in the Guardian

"The adoption rate of babies must increase fourfold , and the numbers of toddlers and older children placed with new families must also increase dramatically, he said in an interview to mark his resignation from the charity he has run for more than five years.

He said adoption was at a historic low and had all but disappeared for babies, despite being a "vital tool in the child protection armoury", particularly for under-ones. " Only 70 babies were adopted last year compared with 4,000 in 1976. We need that figure to get back into the thousands so we need to quadruple it over the next few years – and quadruple it again ," he said..

www.theguardian.com/society/2011/jan/21/adoption-barnardos-chief-martin-narey

.........

Based on all of that, I don't think anyone can accuse social workers of being part of any conspiracy of any type. On the contrary, according to Martin Narey

"Martin Narey said that social workers try “too hard” to keep children with their biological parents"

claw2 Sat 07-Dec-13 11:56:38

Maryz JH has just said "I have never said this. I did say that Local Authorities were rewarded financially for increasing the numbers of adoptions"

It does appear that LA's were rewarded financially for increasing the numbers of adoptions. Others have quite rightly pointed out this is not necessarily a bad thing. What concerns me is that how many corners are cut to achieve this.

Maryz Sat 07-Dec-13 11:57:35

claw, he has said it. Often. It's interesting that he is now saying he hasn't [baffled]

claw2 Sat 07-Dec-13 11:59:22

Maryz, ok lets assume he did say it. I am still concerned with financial rewards, that corners might be cut.

wetaugust Sat 07-Dec-13 12:05:32

Juliet

I was quite depressed to see thread 3 started in continuation of this issue.

There is no point attempting to have any debate here.

This thread is monopolised by a group posters who, in most cases, are either self-professed professionals within the child protection system or have adopted childen themselves, and are so arrogantly self-assured that their views are right that they bully, belittle, taunt and act in a very unprofessional manner towards anyone who expresses different views.

These posters are a group of cronies with minds as closed as the activists they are obsessed with challenging. A group of posters who butter each other up, are rude to other posters and egg each other on to subvert the site's talk guidance, while expressing admiration for each other.

It's been like reading the transcript of a multiple 6th form girly crush.
Nauseating

Unfortunately, these are the sort of people that you meet when you have dealings with childrens services. These are the sort of people that the average parent is up against when the authorities decide to take an interest in their child.

Debate and discussion are impossible.

CarpeVinum Sat 07-Dec-13 12:05:36

Why? maybe because it is cheaper for LA's.

If one is inclined to believe in a mass conspiracy at governmental level and within a plethora of colluding professions to deliberatly cause unlawful, needless, grave harm for economic gain, surely more attention should be paid to the details of motivation for the above, over and above "maybe".

As I understand it from parents of children with SEN, by caring for their children in the family home, despite any additional provisions provided, they are saving the gov. thousands. And that is before you factor in the costs of processes such as investigations, procurring professional reports and hearings in the legal system.

A far cheaper option, (and one that would risk a political party relatively little unpopularity with the bulk of voters, certainly when compared to the accusation of cynical "baby snatching"), is simply reducing need specific provisions and making them much harder to qualify for.

If MPs, SWs, policepersons, legal types etc. have no moral issue in ripping children from adequate-excellent family settings then they are unlikely to have any ethical issue with reducing SEN provision accross the board and denying it to people who would otherwise qualify.

It makes no sense that huge numbers of people, allegedly operating in a moral vacuum with self interest as their main priority, would ignore self interest by rejecting such an obvious route to achieving their desired cost saving. A route that places themselves at a far far lower risk of backlash, costs far less to implement and above all reduces costs related to a far far far greater number of families.

Maryz Sat 07-Dec-13 12:06:07

The thing is, everything has financial reward. To use a comparative example, a hospital is rewarded for performing more operations, but no-one is crazy enough to think they are dragging healthy people in off the street to force them to have a hip replacement or an appendix removed.

If anyone suggested that, it would be dismissed as ridiculous, especially if the operations were costing more than the income from them, iyswim.

So, no matter what the financial incentive for "adoption targets", it wouldn't come near to the cost of keeping children in care, paying for legal cases, approving adoptive parents etc etc. So it's obviously barmy to suggest they are doing it for money, don't you think?

Of course there should be checks and balances, and there are. I'm not sure the exact timescales, but few babies are placed for adoption before they are a year old, even if they have been in care from birth, so certainly it's not rushed. Not from the child's point of view anyway, a year is a long time for a newborn.

And adoption isn't a cheap option. The cheapest option is obviously keeping the child with their birth family, which is why that is always the first option considered. Some people's view is that attempts to keep the family together are pursued for longer than they should be (see some of claigs links above), which can be detrimental for the child.

Maryz Sat 07-Dec-13 12:08:08

Debate is always welcome, wetaugust. The trouble is, in order to win a debate you have to have facts.

Can you back up your post with facts? Or do you just want to abuse everyone, and think that by saying what you have just said that makes you right?

I'm going to repost this from the last thread

I'd be interested to know the opinions of JH, IJ and those posting in support of them on a bit of advice given by someone who appears to share views with the two of them. Possibly influenced by the kind of info they put out.

Picture a family, mum and dad both long term sufferers of quite severe mental health problems, they have a small child, a baby in fact - not even crawling. The pregnancy was hard on the both of them physically and mentally, the birth also very difficult. As a result both parents are drained and struggling, between them they are just about managing to fulfil the baby's day to day needs, but their own have fallen by the wayside and there is no way on earth they are capable of managing even the most basic of household chores. As a result the only safe spaces in their home are a small square on the floor where the baby is allowed to roll about and the crib where the baby sleeps. The very moment the baby learns to crawl there will be very real physical risks to it. The mother has deteriorated so badly that she's suicidal (got as far as lining some pills up) and been put under the care of an emergency mental health team.

She mentions to the mental health professional that she's thinking of asking for external/professional help in order to try and get out of this hole before it gets any worse and is advised not to ask for that help as it "will be reported back to SS, who will remove the baby".

Sound like sensible advice there? Or is there maybe another "professional" who is proving a risk to the vulnerable family?

wetaugust Sat 07-Dec-13 12:13:00

'and think that by saying what you have just said that makes you right?'

Oh the irony of it grin

claw2 Sat 07-Dec-13 12:18:57

Carpe, you see SEN Tribunals are used by LA's to REDUCE the amount of money they spend, never to INCREASE it, better still if you can 'blame' the parents for difficulties, instead of SN's, it costs them next to nothing and yes placing a child with adoptive parents, is cheaper, than a lifetime of provision and support for that child/family.

Parents spend thousands of pounds, not a few thousands, we are talking about remortaging your house thousands, double figure thousands. Where does this money go? it goes on instructing barristers, instructing 'experts' and fighting off social services.

Everyone is a winner, apart from the parent and that child. I am not naïve enough to think, this is the case in every case. However, it does happen in SOME cases.

Anyhow from what I can make of it all. JH fights the corner for parents who might have been wronged. Regardless of his political agenda, I couldn't give a crap about political agenda's, my concerns are with parents and child. There is always something in this for any professional, they make a living out of it.

I am sure he has made some mistakes along the way, as have SS and other professionals etc.

He is filling a void, giving parents a voice, which in my book is not all wrong.

claw2 Sat 07-Dec-13 12:26:09

Anyhow on that note, I am out of here, things to do.

Maryz Sat 07-Dec-13 12:42:29

Claw, I think the way parents of children with SN are treated is generally a bit shit. There seems to be the opinion of "it's your child, get on with it, I'm sure you can cope" and a passing of responsibility and an avoidance of spending any money if at all possible.

It's mad that money that could be spent on the children is spent on legal cases to try to avoid spending the money.

JH is doing nothing to help parents like you. In fact, he is making things worse, because every time he highlights a case like this one, gets his facts wrong, publicises a case where the decisions were correct, it makes lots of people who are involved with the system say "oh, he's just nuts, the system is fine".

The system is patently NOT fine. No-one has ever said it is fine, not for children in care, not for children with SN. Not for parents, be they biological, adopted or foster. Not for social workers who are trying to work in a system that overloads them, doesn't support them, and with a public who criticise them whatever they do.

My beef with JH isn't that he criticises the system. I would have no problem with constructive criticism coupled with a real desire for change. But not a one-size-fits-all "social workers are evil" agenda.

Maryz Sat 07-Dec-13 12:43:37

My first sentence shouldn't say "a bit shit" - it's very shit, I just started typing "a bit" because I was trying to think of an appropriate adjective.

I just ended up with the word shit, because I have no words, really.

NigellasLeftNostril Sat 07-Dec-13 12:45:21

These are the sort of people that the average parent is up against when the authorities decide to take an interest in their child
spot on wetaugust

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