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Bit of advice over social services.

(17 Posts)
ElliesMad Tue 10-May-05 21:01:50

This is a long story that i'll cut short. A realtive of mine was in an abusive relationship. Her dp got sent to prison for assault. The social had no problem with her and her baby visiting him. A week before he was due out they call an emergency meeting and start talking about foster care. She is a good mother but naivly thought she could stick by this man and help him through his problems. She's only 18, baby 1. She gets a court summons friday, court date weds, no real time to get solicitor. They came last Tuesday and took baby to foster carer. Me and dh had wanted to take her but they say he (her dp) is a risk and baby is safer at foster carer. Her dp is in a bail hostel in another county and she ha realised she must finish with him. AT court it was agreed 1 1/2 hour visits 5 days a week. Tehy couldn't arrange it for Thurs- too soon, and this week it's 1 x 1 1/4 and supposed;y 4 of an hour. She has also been told today fosterers going on holiday Friday and want to take baby. To top it all the social worker said to guardian baby getting very attached to foster mother and didn't want to leave her this mornng to visit her mum. Mum overheard this. She is distraught, she feels she is being punished. I agree with her. Her now ex-dp got 2 hours visiting before. My question is can we do anything to help her. If it was ruled at court that she should get xx time then are they in breach of something. She's getting very angry and confused and upset. No wonder.
What can we do???
Anyone know how this sort of thing works. There was mention of foster care together but no one has mentioned it and they seem to be trying to keep them apart.

Please any advice greatly received. As I'm involved now (due to us wanting to take baby in) they my talk to me a little but have not phoned me about taking her even though this was last Weds.

Sorry it was so long.

Aragon Tue 10-May-05 21:28:48


I'm not a social worker and don't know exactly how they work but has your friend got a solicitor?

What do they mean by saying they "couldn't arrange visitation as it was too soon". She needs to insist on visits being arranged so that they can see she is committed to this baby and will visit. Is there nobody in her family who can care for the baby?

I'm not alot of help here I know but can only advise your friend to get a solicitor (preferably one who specialises in children and families) as soon as possible. If visits have been aggreed by the court then social services must arrange them - saying they can't isn't good enough - it's her right.

ElliesMad Tue 10-May-05 21:47:23

Thnkas for your reply Aragon. Yes she's a releative of mine(cousin) and me and dh wanted to take baby but no one has got back to us about it. She has a barrister only works 3 days so hard to get hold of. She's going to try tomorrow. I thought as did you, that if visits had been agreed they are legally binding? Do you think I should speak to barrister? My cousin gets quite upset, and then can't get her point accross. It's really beginning to feel like she's being punished and that they don't want the baby reunited with her. Surely if they breach the order we can do something? SHe's prepared to move/ go into mother and baby unit/ safe house/ foster care together but no ones talking to her.
very frustrating.

Tortington Wed 11-May-05 12:41:23

am sure you could advocate on behalf of your cousin with her permission - even go to meetings and speak or translate between the tears what she means. in a highly emotional state its very hard to remain rational and assertive and to get your point accross. i would also see CAB, get some free legal helplines off the internet - maybe some mumsnetters could help getting that info?

i would assume that the foster carers would need the mothers permission to go on holiday and if i was her i would be as stubbort as possible - no steamrolling here just becuase shes young.

Tortington Wed 11-May-05 12:41:46

BUMP any mumsnetters help with advice?

Fio2 Wed 11-May-05 13:05:00

your poor cousin, that sounds awful. i wonder if their view will change if they realise she ha finished with the violent man? I would try CAB too

ElliesMad Wed 11-May-05 14:00:29

Thanks guys

Didn't think of CAB. RE: the holiday she told them she wasn't happy for baby to go and social worker retorted who's that for you or baby. That's her dd'd first holiday. it would break my heart of someone else took my dd. She has finished with him before and so they think he will come back onto the scene. But how long can they keep baby if she's doing ALL they say???

ElliesMad Wed 11-May-05 14:44:36

Just spoke to her she's got an appointment with the solicitor tomorrow. A bit near to Friday but... And this mornings social worker was by all accounts 'the nice one' who actually talks.
Fingers crossed

Tortington Fri 13-May-05 00:40:20

how did it go? please feedback am really interested

fostermum Fri 13-May-05 09:04:09

if the baby was voleentery put in to foster the foster mum cant do anything with out real mum say so,

ElliesMad Fri 13-May-05 23:30:27

Solicitor noted down all gripes and is going to write to social services. Her dad went with her and felt quite confident. She is after all doing all they say, re, visits etc. She has agreed to counselling and any groups they wish to send her on. Crazy really as she got beaten and that's all she's really done. Social said they haad spoken to guardian and head of social services and going on holiday with foster mother was deemed to be in babies best interest. Cousin and parents trying to get home visits and grandparent visits. There's a conference on Tuesday with SS, HV, guardian. Although it doesn't feel like much is happening at least things are going through the right channels. No one has phoned me and DH yet about us taking baby so I suppose that won't happen??? We had wanted to foster anyway but had thought it better to wait until dd was a bit older. SHe's nearly 2. Cousins baby 15 months.
Baby not put into foster care voluntarily, at court she neither agreed nor opposed. Does that make sense??
What does this mean about her rights???

Tortington Sun 15-May-05 19:25:30

i can't answer your questions, but just wanted to saythanks so much for the feedback. please post again when you have more information


ElliesMad Sun 15-May-05 22:45:03

Thanks Custardo. Will do when there's more news.

irishbird Sun 15-May-05 23:06:41

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

gggglimpopo Sun 15-May-05 23:13:20

Ditto Irishbird - I would suggest that she talks to the health visitor and asks her what is going on; the hv would have been one of the decision makers in the initial case conferences. She needs to know what the concerns are (if xp is out of the picture) and what can be done to resolve these ongoing issues. I would do this face to face, personally - ask if the health visitor could come over rather than go to a clinic.

gggglimpopo Sun 15-May-05 23:14:50

"she" refers to your relative, not the hv....

ElliesMad Mon 16-May-05 11:38:03

There is a case conference meeting tomoorow with HV, social services, court guardian. Would you address it then? I think their concern is that she has gone back to him before. She needs support to stay away. She's doing it ok at the moment though.

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