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Following on from the 'Babies taken into care to meet adoption targets' thread -

(31 Posts)
Callisto Tue 03-Jul-07 08:17:28

- there is this disturbing article in the Telegraph: here

MingMingtheWonderPet Tue 03-Jul-07 12:29:03

Very interesting article, thankyou for the link.
Felt desperately sorry for the family that was featured on Panorama last night, what an awful situation to be plunged into.
Would be awful for the adopters aswell if they had put 2 and 2 together and worked out that they had Child A, B, or C.

TheDevilWearsPrimark Tue 03-Jul-07 12:37:53

It is very sad. At antenatal classes with my first there was a lovely woman who I got on with really well. About two months after DS was born I saw her in a shop and asked how she was, she said the baby had been taken into care at birth and she only saw him once a week. She was expressing milk which she had to deposit at the health clinic. I felt so sad for her. Obviously I don't know the whole story but she seemed such a lovely woman and so caring. How can it be good to wrench a child rom their mothers arms like that?

ViciousSquirrelSpotter Tue 03-Jul-07 12:39:52

This is one issue the Telegraph is really good on.

As is Sarah Harman. And hopefully, Harriet.

expatinscotland Tue 03-Jul-07 12:40:45

ANYTIME you give people the power to act in secrecy, it goes to their heads.

We've got thousands of years of history to prove this but still haven't learned FA.

What a disgrace.

TheDevilWearsPrimark Tue 03-Jul-07 12:45:23

It really is sad. Surely the job of social services is to recognise families in need and offer support. Not to twist what they have been told in confidence and use it against them.

edam Tue 03-Jul-07 12:48:04

Agree there should be much more scrutiny of social servcies. The ex-MNer whose children were removed after Roy Meadows made all sorts of untrue claims about her despite not bothering to meet her (he claimed Munchausen's syndrome by proxy - actually she just had a v. rare disease and is now in a wheelchair) was treated terribly.

Even when the govt. asked SS to review all cases which had rested on the evidence of expert witness, her SS dept. lied and claimed it didn't apply to her. No wonder the govt. said 'oh, there were only a few cases, don't worry'.

She wasn't able to ask her MP for help -court threatened her if she ever told anybody - or even tell her doctors what had happened as her medical records were 'sealed'. And it turned out SS had lied to the court re the adoption - the judge ordered an open adoption, which didn't happen, and that the children should be adopted by someone of the same religion, again, didn't happen.

And then SS cruelly gave her dd a 'letter for life' detailing the original case despite knowing full well it was disputed and that the mother clearly did have a very real medical condition. Bastards.

It is not beyond the wit of intelligent people to design a system that ensures the confidentiality of the child while allowing proper scrutiny by the public and by elected representatives.

edam Tue 03-Jul-07 12:50:33

AND the sws involved in the Rochdale hysteria who are recorded on video tormenting children are stil working. AND the senior sws who let Victoria Climbie suffer have actually been promoted, while all the shit was heaped on the most junior member of the team, who did not have the training or resources to do the job that was required.

Something very, very wrong with that profession and proper scrutiny is needed to ensure it is repaired.

MingMingtheWonderPet Tue 03-Jul-07 12:51:17

'It is not beyond the wit of intelligent people to design a system that ensures the confidentiality of the child while allowing proper scrutiny by the public and by elected representatives.'
I agree eith you totally edam, surely there must be some way of ensuring this?
The confidentiality of the child is obvoulsy of paramount importance as well, but the system appears to use this as an excuse for its other failings.

MamaGroundskeeperWillie Tue 03-Jul-07 12:51:31

thats a very intersting aticle callisto

TheDevilWearsPrimark Tue 03-Jul-07 12:52:49

edam I know that story full well and it is heartbreaking and sickening.
The new information sharing law worries me for just these reasons. A case could be built up between health professionals without the parents/children involved knowing what is on their file.

Upwind Tue 03-Jul-07 13:04:33

I have recently heard friends explain that they did not take their child to casualty with injuries because they were afraid they might wind up in a situation like this, having had other children who had injured themselves in the past.

I was utterly horrified by this. Thinking back my siblings and I each broke arms, noses and toes due to reckless use of bicycles and skateboards and a propensity to climb things.

It is quite normal for children to hurt themselves like that and did us no lasting damage, because we had medical attention and had the broken bones promptly and properly set. If parents are afraid of taking an injured child to hospital they won't have that.

TheDevilWearsPrimark Tue 03-Jul-07 13:10:30

They are terrified, and understandably.
My friends little boy cut his head open on the bath taps after he slipped, and he became faint. They called an ambulance and were questioned by a social worker in A&E
I understand they have to be careful, but really, to put innocent parents through such shit...

Callisto Tue 03-Jul-07 14:36:35

It is terrifying. I dread being in a situation (like taking dd to A&E) where ss are involved and I would certainly never ask them for help on any aspect of childcare.

The point made about rape victums privacy not being breached is a good example of press responsibility and proof that open family courts could protect children.

Edam - you say that the mother wasn't allowed to contact her MP? I thought that MP's were on the list of approved people that you can contact in this situation? How utterly appalling to be so powerless.

edam Tue 03-Jul-07 14:57:09

No, she wasn't. Outrageous, isn't it?

smallwhitecat Tue 03-Jul-07 15:00:23

Message withdrawn

expatinscotland Tue 03-Jul-07 15:02:48

I'm sure he sleeps the same way his minion, Gordon Brown does, very well, without a second thought.

smallwhitecat Tue 03-Jul-07 15:10:04

Message withdrawn

SueBaroo Tue 03-Jul-07 15:59:43

It's called being out of touch. I recall on Question Time when TB bumped into the reality of the 48 hour rule on GP appointments. Didn't occur to him that setting a funding-linked target on being seen by a GP within 48 hours would mean that GP Surgeries wouldn't let you make an appointment a week in advance.

Bunch of idiots. It's human nature that a funding-linked target is going to get played.

edam Tue 03-Jul-07 16:45:27

Of course it is, Sue, and he was warned about it. But as long as he could claim the government had hit the targets, what did it matter if people couldn't actually make an appointment?

The Department of Health were happy to sweep game playing under the rug, despite it being clear that it was costing lives wrt ambulance targets.

PatMustard Wed 04-Jul-07 13:51:23

Blimey, you lot really have it in for Children's Services don't you?

Mistakes are made, and each one is tragic.

However SWs seem to find themselves in a "damned if you do, damned if you don't" situation. People on this thread have expressed concern about SWs being over-zealous at A+E depts, but at the same time have pointed out the Climbie case, where insufficient attention was paid to how Victoria was injured.

SWs DO work towards keeping families together - the Children Act will not allow anything else. It is heartbreaking when families have to separate, even if this is not permanent, but if children are at risk it can be the lesser of evils.

<sits back and awaits hellfire and damnation>

Upwind Wed 04-Jul-07 13:59:07

The Climbie case was mentioned by Edam in this post:

"
AND the sws involved in the Rochdale hysteria who are recorded on video tormenting children are stil working. AND the senior sws who let Victoria Climbie suffer have actually been promoted, while all the shit was heaped on the most junior member of the team, who did not have the training or resources to do the job that was required.

Something very, very wrong with that profession and proper scrutiny is needed to ensure it is repaired. "

Senior professionals usually get paid more because they have greater responsibility - the ones who were responsible in the Climbie case were promoted, while the unfortunate junior social worker involved was made into a scapegoat.

To me that is nothing short of disgraceful and that this happened in such a high profile case shows shocking arrogance on the part of the social services, at the highest level.

Social services seem to be neglecting their duty towards truly deprived children while tormenting and terrifying soft targets. There is no real inconsistency in being angry about sws intervening where they shouldn't and yet not intervening where they should.

PatMustard Wed 04-Jul-07 14:04:40

But what level of intervention/scrutiny of people struggling with parenting would you be happy to see?

It seems that people begrugde ANY questions being asked, but somehow expect SWs to know (through telepathy) who potential abusers/neglecters. There will always need to be some intervention in people's lives to protect children's safety and well being.

<braces self>

Upwind Wed 04-Jul-07 14:10:50

I don't think it is as simple as setting some arbitrary "level of intervention".

There should certainly be accountability involved when sw have the authority to permanently remove children from their parents.

expatinscotland Wed 04-Jul-07 14:14:37

'Mistakes are made, and each one is tragic. '

Even more so when they happen to YOU.

Is it so much to ask, that the level of secrecy with which these people are allowed to do what they please is at least someone diminished and scrutinised?

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