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To wonder about all the press on Social Services taking children away?

(459 Posts)
goldbracelet Thu 17-May-12 22:24:10

From good families and parents for no good reason. It is media hype or is there truth in it?

Talking with friends recently, some say they are careful about what they say to the GP for fear of what goes down on record. For example, they would think twice before saying something along the lines of, "I'm finding it hard to cope with my young children while sick with flu (or whatever illness)".

Amy social workers out there who could comment? Is it true that 95% of children are never returned to their parents once removed?

Scary. I can't believe this could happen.

glenthebattleostrich Fri 18-May-12 08:15:36

Christopher Brooker in the Sunday Telegraph writes about it frequently.

From a personal point of view my family have seen the best and worst of social workers (one who almost put DNeices into care because of their mothers abuse and refused to contact my DBro, she is currently under review or whatever it is they do, another who has worked her arse off, even traveling to see my DBro and DNeices on her day off to work with them and help and support my DBro).

One problem is the increasing industry of reports from non practicing phychologists (sp) who are making a living out of writing reports on people they have met for a few minutes at all, there have been several of these reported on. In fact my DBro's report was on the whole glowing but ended with 'xxx could in the future possibly start to possibly display mild narsicistic tendancies. ' I wasn't aware these people were fortune tellers too! After complaining to the fab SW this was reviewed and removed.

Like any profession, there are excellent, good, mediocre and bad people. Unfortunately the few bad ones are the ones getting the press at the moment. I will say that the profession is massively underfunded at the moment and that is a major problem, however the majority do do a fantastic job.

BalloonSlayer Fri 18-May-12 08:25:03

knowotumean I think the lady in that case is a Mumsnetter. I have seen posts on here from someone with identical experience to the lady in that case, and quite recently too.

Margerykemp Fri 18-May-12 08:26:23

I know of a case (close friend) where there was a false allegation of physical abuse. Social workers whipped the child away and the innocent mum had to fight and was lucky to get the DC back. There may be procedures that legally should be followed but in this case they ignored the law and took advantage of someone who they didn't think would get a lawyer involved.

Years on the mum still has PTSD from the experience.

OhDoAdmitMrsDeVere Fri 18-May-12 08:45:30

There is a trend in my area to call SS if someone pisess you off. Ironically they would rather poke their eyes out than grass on real abuse.
I know quite a few people who have had this happen and the cases didn't go anywhere.
I have also found its really hard to get Ss to take legal responsibility for a child.
I also know a fair bit about the law surrounding child protection and it is complicated and very difficult to remove a child

Mrsjay Fri 18-May-12 08:48:25

SS are not the childcatcher they are not at Gp surgeries with Nets , A lot of people are paranoid about things being "noted" down its scaremongering , it is really difficult for a child to be taken into care and really is the last resort IME ,

Mrsjay Fri 18-May-12 08:50:09

I know people who have said what did i do wrong they have stolen my children , they have no right to do that , they are MY children , they failed to realise how dangerous and neglectful it would be to have the children at home , sad

Chundle Fri 18-May-12 08:52:33

I used to attend a children's centre with a woman last year. She had 5 kids. 2 were disabled. She had a higgledy piggledy house out in the sticks that was a tad messy and unkempt as it was an old farmhouse. She had all five of her kids removed and placed with temp foster carers before being placed with her mum due to the state of her house. They never once gave her help to try and gut the place first and I know firsthand that they have been looking for reasons to remove those kids for years just because the mum didn't dress like regular people and because her house wasn't as clean as others!! She was accused by sw of all sorts all of which was proved in incorrect by medical experts!!

Noqontrol Fri 18-May-12 10:01:57

Do you really think that was the whole story though chundle ? social workers don't generally take steps to remove children from a house that is just a tad messy.

Birdsgottafly Fri 18-May-12 10:25:33

Is it true that 95% of children are never returned to their parents once removed

No that isn't and you have to realise that within the figures of the children that have been removed,many will be with family and the parents are happy for them to stay there.

Slow paperwork

Now there are legal frame works to work within and timescales.

Most parents are in denial about the issues, so it is difficult to go on anyone's say so. Also often parents don't get legal representation/advocacy, or turn up forappointments, which slows everything down.

Birdsgottafly Fri 18-May-12 10:27:41

Social workers whipped the child away

The court has to be satisfied that there is a case to answer.

Everything is ran past your manager then legal, then you file for court.

Birdsgottafly Fri 18-May-12 10:33:35

When posts have started off on here from a parent whose child is 'in the system' and i start to ask questions about them being offered parenting assessments etc, they dissappear. I can recognise immediately when they are not presenting the facts.

There is a process to o through before the return f a child, in the cases that i handle, 90% of the delay is because of non co-opporation from the parents, not turning up for appointments, etc.

L.A.'s do perfom differently, guidelines/threaseholds vary between them. The system as it is now, if it is followed, works well. There have been big changes in the last 12months and there will be more from this year.

Birdsgottafly Fri 18-May-12 10:37:44

She had all five of her kids removed and placed with temp foster carers before being placed with her mum due to the state of her house.

I doubt that the case is as simple as that, but it is a shame that the family didn't step in before there was a need to remove them.

SS often pick up what was once the remit of a good close nan/family.

SystemofaDowny Fri 18-May-12 10:46:24

I believe the stories due to my own personal experience with social services. i can post the details if anyone wants to know about it. An independent review found that they removed my child without good cause, which they later admitted, but they then commenced a 9 month 'investigation' to try to find alternative reasons to keep her in care. The process was not in the best interests of the child or family and only aided the social worker (who had made the original incorrect judgement) to cover her own back. The investigation was also found to be heavily biased due to 'twin tracking' the process of looking for an adoptive family before the court has decided the child should be adopted.

I'm sure this doesn't happen as often as the case where the right decision is made. But the secrecy surrounding chid protection procedures and the default assumption by the general public that 'there is no smoke without fire,' i my opinion enables social workers to act in this way, and adds to the trauma experienced by children and families when their experiences are not believed.

Birdsgottafly Fri 18-May-12 10:57:32

I don't think that the public do believe hat there 'is no smoke without fire', i think that most people don't want to think about child neglect being deliberate or damaging.

There are senario's where investigation starts or a removal and it is found that there isn't a case to answer, but the child is returned.

That is better than leaving a child in a potentially dangerous situation. It's a bit like false arrest, or sectioning.

Do we want more than 5 dead children a week? really is the question.

That is probably an underestimation and doesn't include death through neglect etc.

HecateTrivia Fri 18-May-12 11:11:48

There is a person I am aware of, I must be vague for obvious reasons and this will involve fudging a few details, missing a few bits out etc, who social services have been made aware of. This person has a number of children, including sn. This person has a number of personal issues. They are also neglecting the children - in every way. Emotional, schooling, hygiene, state of the home etc

Social services made a visit and told this person what they needed to do, and how to do it and how to access help and support.

They came back. Person had not done it.

They told them again, and warned them that if they continued to do nothing to change any of the areas of concern, then further action would be taken.

They have done nothing.

These are children that are dirty and uncared for. Whose sn are not being met, etc etc.

Social services are still working to try to get this person to change.

Surely, if it was a case of whip 'em away - these children would have simply been removed by now?

tbh, I hope they are. It's awful, the way they live. Heartbreaking. If this person would only try, that at least would be something. But they don't. Even though social services are involved and basically pleading with them to!

So no. I don't think there's any rush to remove children from their families. It really is a last resort.

mysecretworld Thu 29-Nov-12 18:03:13

90% of children taken by ss are put for adoption. thats fact look it up people.

OutragedAtThePriceOfFreddos Thu 29-Nov-12 18:11:05

In my limited experience, I don't think SS take children away from neglectful parents quickly enough. I have known children to be left with parents who don't care for the and are abusive in their neglect.

The cases where they have removed children wrongly are going to be few and far between, but they are going to get the most press. There will be mistakes made in every profession, that's just life.

ErikNorseman Thu 29-Nov-12 18:15:38

90% of children taken by ss are put for adoption. thats fact look it up people

No it's not

Ilovetoridecamels Thu 29-Nov-12 18:16:51

I think you are a poster who likes to spread fear.

Ilovetoridecamels Thu 29-Nov-12 18:17:21

Meaning the op.

90% of children taken by ss are put for adoption. thats fact look it up people.

How about you back it up instead. You're making the claim, so the onus is on you to prove that it is true.

And in response to the OP - social services are not perfect, they don't always get it right. Unfortunately, however, the only time we hear anything about their work is when something goes wrong and this colours people's opinions of them. They're very much damned if they do and damned if they don't.

mysecretworld Thu 29-Nov-12 18:27:57

look on the adoption website BE MY PARENT it shows alot of the children taken by ss who are available for adoption.

i know for a fact due to seeing it first hand.

i know of countless children who have gone for adoption this year alone because the ss have stated "risk of future emotional abuse" as the reason the parents cant have the children back.

mysecretworld Thu 29-Nov-12 18:29:24 please read this

mysecretworld Thu 29-Nov-12 18:35:06

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