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LGO - how do they get away with such bias?

(15 Posts)
tryingtokeepintune Tue 18-Oct-11 19:30:26

Aarh - just received the initial report and after reading other people's experience, can't say I am that shocked.

However, I am still stunned at how the report has been worded so as to make the LA actions seemed reasonable, how the LA's word has been taken even though I have no evidence that certain actions have been taken etc. My explanations etc. have been ignored. The lgo even used one of the statement I erroneously made but which I later corrected to excuse the LA.

Can I ask for the correspondence that apparently the LA have sent to the school to try to get ds's provisions started? Nowhere does the LGO state that perhaps I should have been party to such correspondence so that I know something was being done.

What to do next? My dh thinks that I should concentrate on ds and the rational me thinks so to. After all, the lgowatcher has already highlighted what the lgo is really like.

Sorry, just needed to rant - am off to look for wine.

StarlightMcKenzie Tue 18-Oct-11 19:45:23

I don't know what you should do now trying but I do know 'some' things.

I know that the lengths you have gone to for your child are not to be forgotten. I know that whilst the system has failed him YOU have not. I know that however a small a chance you had to make a difference for him you fought for, against all the odds. I know that successes come from people like you, despite the huge personal sacrafice. Your DS is a winner for having you. I know that you will not lie on your deathbed wondering if you had done enough, regretting giving up. I know that in the future if your ds ever finds out what you have done for him he would be bloody proud and understand how much he is loved.

In terms of what to do now, well really you have to regroup and direct your weapons at the most effective way of ensuring progress for your ds. Would that be finding out how to fight the LGO? It might. I'm not sure as I haven't climbed that ladder myself. Perhaps you have to simply to stop the LA from taunting you and further neglect. But perhaps it is time to focus on the next year directly wrt your ds.

I think you have to think carefully about what you want to achieve first, with your ds at the heart of it, putting aside your own anger and need to direct that somewhere. Once you know what you want to achieve you need to devise a strategy and then put all your energy into that. It could well mean knowing when to give up with some things and out of everything I find those decisions particularly hard, when I know that I am right and that justice has not been done.

Hope you figure it out.

insanityscratching Tue 18-Oct-11 19:48:41

My response was equally rubbish. The LGO took the LA at their word even though they were not telling the truth and so wouldn't be able to send evidence to confirm this.

I have gone through the whole response providing evidence of where the LA have misled. I have reworded the complaint down to the bare bones because I don't think the LGO get any complexities (I'll raise the rest later) and I have asked our MP if she can get involved.

I still think they will do their best to shelve it but I'll ask for it to be reviewed if they do.

I'll keep pursuing because now the fight for ds's placement is over and and appealing parts two and three is months off then I have the time and space to do so and I'm still livid.

But to be honest I won the real battle so this is just secondary and I refuse to let it take over my life like the last one.

schmollandresident Tue 18-Oct-11 19:50:43

Yep, mine was crap too. They don't seem to understand the law - which is worrying. But I'm making it Battle B, not Battle A.

StarlightMcKenzie Tue 18-Oct-11 19:51:51

insanity, I truly admire you for persuing it. I wouldn't blame you if you collapsed in a heap and forgot the whole thing. I like to think I would follow in your shoes when we have won this bloody nightmare, but sadly, since we aren't asking for an independent placement I suspect it'll go on for years.

willowthecat Tue 18-Oct-11 19:55:06

ask for a data protection act disclosure of all the documents said to prove what the LA claim. If they supply little of value or substance, ask them to state they are not witholding data under an exemption. It should at least establish that there is no evidence to back their claims - though sadly for those who are biased, my word/lies are my bond seem to do the trick regardless of evidence

appropriatelytrained Tue 18-Oct-11 20:05:48

As you know, I'm in the same boat with the LGO. I now have 2 complaints against our lousy LA, the first of which the LGO erroneously try to side step by saying the council had acted reasonably.

I sent a ten page letter outlining how it is not legally possible to act reasonably in breaching statutory duties of strict liability. They re-opened their investigation.

As willow says, the first step is to ask for a copy of the file. From this, you will see that the LA probably told the LGO bollocks all but that the LGO was looking for a way out - any way out.

Be warned. It is a long and stressful process. Whether they don't know the law, or they deliberately ignore the law, is debatable.

Fix on the following:

(i) has there been maladministration? Look at the examples of maladministration on the LGO website
(ii) has it caused injustice

Then, thinking in judicial review logic, write a letter asking for a review. This means for example, considering if, when looking at maladministration and injustice:

(i) the LGO taken something irrelevant into account
(ii) the LGO have not taken into account something relevant
(iii) their decision unreasonable on the facts
(iv) they have demonstrated bias, e.g. by joining dots together on behalf of the LA, making excuses for the LA

PM me and I will help you if I can. BUT think about what your end goal is. What do you want to achieve? Make it clear to the LGO that you are after a constructive resolution and what their help to achieve it.

tiredoffightingwithjelly Tue 18-Oct-11 20:26:55

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

TheTimeTravellersWife Tue 18-Oct-11 20:43:22

I am sorry to read that people have had such bad experiences of the LGO, but somehow, it doesn't surprise me. If the LGO process worked properly, then LAs would not be able to get away with repeatedly breaking the law. The Tribunal systems does not "police" the LAs either. The only redress is Judicial Review, which is beyond most people. That's why they get away with it.
I see it as a serious of battles, in a long drawn out war. Never lose sight of your long term aims, easy to say, but so hard to do in practice!

tryingtokeepintune Tue 18-Oct-11 20:55:41

Thank you all. Yes, have to remember that this is not the main battle but the provisions for my ds is and I have won THAT battle - for now.

The odd thing is that the report highlighted a few acts, which in my email to the lgo, I said I thought the LA should have done. Apparently, the LA had done all those things eg. told the school they got the legal issues wrong etc. but all without copying me into the correspondence. The cynical me might think that these were all manufactured later or the lgo just asked the LA if they had done them and accepted their assurances.

Will ask for a dp sar because it might prove interesting even while I am deciding what to do next.

Star - do you think if you win ABA this year they will leave you alone?

TheTimeTravellersWife Tue 18-Oct-11 21:08:54

Tryingtokeepintune, in my experience, they never leave you alone. They called an AR weeks after we won our Tribunal, and tried then to strip away the support and provision that we had just hard won!
We gave them short shrift and they left us alone for another year. They are back for another go again at this years AR. Expecting, like Star, to be back at Tribunal again.
So no, it never ends. angry

appropriatelytrained Tue 18-Oct-11 21:14:29

Trying - did you have solicitors involved? I wonder if that makes any difference at all?

TimeTravellersWife - you are right. There is no accountability and so these people get away with it time and time again - because they can.

StarlightMcKenzie Tue 18-Oct-11 21:14:46

No trying I don't think they will leave me alone. I have spoken to a solicitor who says that parents that go to tribunal for provision in mainstream and resist specialist placements come back after a couple of years having changed their mind. It isn't that it 'can't' work, it is simply that it doesn't. Too much messing around. Too many lies.

Parents decide in the end that an indpendent placement, once won, is the end of it until transition.

tryingtokeepintune Tue 18-Oct-11 21:26:26

AT - no, no solicitors involved. Do you think it makes a difference?

TimeTravellersWife and Star - it is really depressing to hear that you will be going back again. Why am I not that surprised?

appropriatelytrained Tue 18-Oct-11 21:45:00

I don't know. Solicitors have prepared my second complaint after my experience with the first! Maybe they'll ignore them too.

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