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Formal complaint

(19 Posts)
poohsticks30 Fri 19-Jun-20 20:56:55

Formal complaint lodged against our social worker due to multiple errors putting our LO and ourselves at risk. Response came back full of half truths and even complete lies many of which we can prove. Does any know what the next step would be if we wanted to push this further?

OP’s posts: |
defaultusername Fri 19-Jun-20 21:33:56

Madness. In my experience, it would lead to madness. You've already experienced it- the lies/spun half truths. Don't prolong the agony, unless it will directly affect your child/children now. One day, there will be a scandal. But don't be the tall poppy, turn away with your head high, knowing they have to live with themselves as liars, who can take no pride in their work being done well.

I'm sure someone else can advise on how to pursue the madness, but my advise is don't. You can't win, if corruption has already been shown.

Niffler75 Fri 19-Jun-20 21:34:34

@poohsticks30 Oh gosh, so sorry to hear this! 😟 If you are with a LA take a look at their website which should clearly outline the complaints process and how to escalate the complaint. Consider getting some advice from Adoption UK.
Go through the response with a fine tooth comb. List everything you disagree with point by point and the evidence you have to each point.

Ted27 Fri 19-Jun-20 22:54:05

I thnk it depends what you are trying to achieve by making a complaint.

what do you want to happen?

poohsticks30 Fri 19-Jun-20 23:30:05

We want it not to happen to another family. We want the social worker to get additional training on adoption as she was truly unprofessional in her lack of understanding of adoption as a whole, child development and the risk factors involved. And we would really like for the manager to stop lying!!! We look at friends around us who have adopted and worry that if this had happened to someone else it would have broken down the placement which would have been heart breaking for any child or adoptive parents. I just don't get how some social workers can get away with it (yes some are fantastic- our social worker is!)

OP’s posts: |
Ted27 Fri 19-Jun-20 23:41:41

If you are in England

If you want to pursue a complaint about individual social workers conduct have a look at Social Work England.
There is also the Local Govt Ombudsman - but they focus more on whether the LA has followed process etc

Niffler75 Sat 20-Jun-20 01:33:47

@poohsticks30 Hi, I really get it. I also get why others may question what you want to achieve. I think people can get extremely battle weary constantly fighting the 'system'. 😣
We complained to our LA about approaches to post adoption support, unhelpful approaches and the lack of knowledge and training on FASD. This resulted in us having inappropriate support and interventions and delayed diagnosis for our son.
Changes have been made following our complaint including whole consortium training on FASD. While we cannot change what happened to us we hope by speaking up it will improve standards and outcomes for other families.

Mojocafa Sat 20-Jun-20 06:44:03

From my own experience, you won’t win, it will cause you further heartache and you will be seen as the troublemaker.

Keep any paperwork you have as evidence.

LA are corrupt, Sw will cover each other’s backs. The system is bigger than you and sadly you don’t have a chance.

In my experience, social worker put children at risk, nothing but lies came from her, her senior defended her, and the seniors up to the head of children services within my council defended her.
Unfortunately councils encourage and permit Sw to lie. I took the complaint to the care inspectorate and the SSSC thinking they would help, but alas no! More corrupt SW backing each other.
However, I am a great believer in Karma, and the SW that caused all the trouble for me, got her comeuppance this week. So children will now be safer in my LA as she will no longer be practicing. 👍

Ted27 Sat 20-Jun-20 13:52:37

@Mojocafa has a point, which is why I asked what you wanted to achieve.
Many moons ago I was responsible for the complaints procedure of a national education funding body. What do you want to achieve was always my first question, not because I wanted to avoid the complaint but because sometimes there is a better way to get what you want.

I do understand. I've been engaged in battle with an LA for two years now, if there wasn't the welfare of a child involved I would have given up a long time ago.

Purple1314 Sat 20-Jun-20 14:27:02

I think with most Local Authorities complaints go in three stages. So your first response is from the team manager, the next from the service manager and then it goes to an independent place for resolution. Make sure your complaint is being dealt with within the formal complaints procedures and taken as a formal complaint rather than resolved outside of that process.

BurtsBeesKnees Sat 20-Jun-20 21:26:41

Good luck op. All I can say is make sure you log EVERYTHING. In my experience the LA firstly cover their own arses, even when it comes to what's best for a child, arses first, child second. A good solicitor is a must. SS and LA will do everything they can to push blame elsewhere. Even into you.

When going diwn a route such as this, don't presume it'll be the same as when dealing with a fully functioning company, it's not. It's so full of red tape and arse covering that you'll struggle.

rose69 Sun 21-Jun-20 15:54:00

The letter should set out who to complain to. It should be a more senior director in the council. If you exhaust that route you can then complain to the Ombudsman. The route should be set out in the complaints page in the council's website.

theopleiikld Sun 21-Jun-20 20:00:55

OP if you haven't already done so, a really helpful thing to do is to write out each point you disagree with in numbered paragraphs for each together with an explanation of why you disagree, your version of events, so that you have it in writing for your own use at any time now or in the future.

poohsticks30 Sun 21-Jun-20 21:19:55

Hi all,
Formal complaint went in and was responded to recently. I have responded as lies have continued to be told- including them claiming they had done home visits which never happened! Waiting for the next response and if that doesn't yield answers I will be looking into contact social work England. It's shocking the amount of arse covering that is going on at the expense of a little one!!!

OP’s posts: |
Niffler75 Sun 21-Jun-20 22:19:45

@poohsticks30 So sorry, it's seems never ending! 😖 Follow the LA complaints procedure, pull together your evidence, document everything and have a look at the Local GovernmentOmbudsman website.

defaultusername Sun 21-Jun-20 23:03:23

You can do all that... but will it change anything for your family?

If you're doing this altruistically, thinking you're the ones that can stop this happening to another family, I wish you strength and resilience... you're going to need it, because you'll have to do better than all the rest of us that have tried.

If there is a direct good that can come from complaining for your family, then go ahead. But if you're wanting an apology? Very unlikely, I'd say.

My experience was shocking. So shocking it's made me question everything I was told about BPs, and DC's histories etc. It's hugely concerning. However, it's not unheard of for it to be turned around that you're the problem. And when children's services decide you're the problem, that can be a very scary position to be in.

Be very clear what you want to achieve. And as others have said, don't expect the process to be as if it were a functional organisation. From what I've heard of the NHS 20 years ago, that's where social services are still, cover-ups, denial, blame the victim.

Good luck.

theopleiikld Mon 22-Jun-20 09:25:09

My experience was shocking. So shocking it's made me question everything I was told about BPs, and DC's histories etc. It's hugely concerning I agree with this, and many social workers would also agree with this. There a so many wider issues here. In relation to adoption, it has been recognised by the BASW that a re-haul is needed, I am not sure whether you can write directly to the BASW CEO Ruth Allen?

defaultusername Mon 22-Jun-20 23:11:58

I am not sure whether you can write directly to the BASW CEO Ruth Allen?

Is that to me, or to the OP? I am not prepared to take things any further, I am sorry about the children being failed, but it's not me failing them, and I have to focus on my family.

If someone had told me what happened to us, I would have been skeptical, and assumed they were mistaken, misunderstood, were lying, or there had to be more to it... Don't under-estimate the levels of corruption, and don't under-estimate the levels of malice. I'd love to believe our experiences were unique.

theopleiikld Tue 23-Jun-20 08:35:35

No, it was to the OP, if she wants to take it further.

defaultusername I do the same thing as you, and agree with what you say.

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