Mumsnet Logo
My feed

to access all these features


TO think Sharon Shoesmith should have walked out of court by a side exit

221 replies

Silver1 · 27/05/2011 13:02

Sharon Shoesmith was the Director of Children's Services in Harringey at the time of Peter Connelly's death he was known to most of us as Baby P.

AIBU to feel really upset -although the judge upheld the report by OFstead that her department was inadequate and that her own own review of the case was deficient.
I know that actually she didn't kill that little boy.
I know that Ed Balls could have and should have followed proper procedures if he decided that she wasn't fit for purpose
But did she really have to walk out of court with a beaming smile and say she was "over the moon"
The Badman report (independent) concluded that ''In this case the practice of the majority, both individually and collectively expressed as the culture of safeguarding and child protection at the time, was incompetent and their approach was completely inadequate to meet the challenge presented by the case of child A (Peter).''

A little boy died-because her department which was supposed to protect him missed their chances to save him because of the practices that she was over seeing. She should have had the grace to leave the court by one of the many side exits.

It is all over the news

OP posts:

Silver1 · 27/05/2011 13:03

PS She won her appeal against unfair dismissal hence she has walked out of court happy as a lark

OP posts:

Birdsgottafly · 27/05/2011 13:06

While her department was responsible for alot of what went wrong the findings are that non of the services involved; health care, eduaction and police acted accordingly.

What made this case so terrible is that it shouldn't have happened again (Victoria Climbie 2007) Lord Lammings findings were that his recommendations wasn't followed, the laws were there but not used.


Birdsgottafly · 27/05/2011 13:08

So OP your summing up isn't totally correct, it wasn't just the failings of HER department.

I do think that the smile on her face was uncalled for and doesn't do her or anyone working for SS any favours.


Serenitysutton · 27/05/2011 13:10

I think she had the right to take them to court for acting unlawfully and she has now successfully defended her rights. It was hugely stressful and I don't blame her for having a smile. The baby P case might be emotive but that does not mean LB harringay can act unlawfully.


Silver1 · 27/05/2011 13:10

Ultimately her department would have acted on the findings of the police who wanted him removed and the GP who reported NAIs. So yeah she might be held to task.
No it wasn't just one department that doesn't mean they couldn't have and shouldn't have acted when they had the chance. They were visiting the family (66 times in total) no one else had that exposure to the Connellys

OP posts:

smallwhitecat · 27/05/2011 13:10

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn

nijinsky · 27/05/2011 13:11

She does seem to possess some strange personal character traits...


Birdsgottafly · 27/05/2011 13:11

She would have been chashed for pictures, so i can see the point of her leaving via the front door, otherwise the headline would have been about how she slunk away. She should have dropped the smile.


smallwhitecat · 27/05/2011 13:11

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn

giveitago · 27/05/2011 13:12

Sort of with poster. Her appeal for unfair dismissal was upheld because she was sacked unfairly because the appropriate processes were not followed.

Did the social workers involved get the same treatment and will it open doors for them to get a lovely payout?


takethisonehereforastart · 27/05/2011 13:13

I haven't seen the news but if that is correct (the big smile and the over the moon comment) she has shown herself to be very out of touch with the way people feel over the Baby P case and very insensitive. So still proof to me that she was the wrong person for the job.


Birdsgottafly · 27/05/2011 13:13

Unless posters are prepared to read the reports into Peters death (i have had to as a CP SW) i don't think the case should be pulled apart on here. There are four other siblings and a family who are innocent involved in this.


TheCrackFox · 27/05/2011 13:15

£400,000 that the taxpayers have to stump up. £50 would have been sufficient.


Birdsgottafly · 27/05/2011 13:15

givitago-there isn't 'one other' SW as such because the family moved. There will not be payouts.


Silver1 · 27/05/2011 13:16

I don't think the SWs should be pulled apart-and I don't think any CP SW wants a child to die, I do think though that ultimately when they go for a removal it is not their decision alone, properly it is the decision of a team of people Sharon Shoesmith was involved in implementing a strategy for that team to follow.

OP posts:

Birdsgottafly · 27/05/2011 13:16

Payouts to SW's i ment, she gets what she is entitlted to under her contract. The whole department has been having problems for a decade.


minieggfannomore · 27/05/2011 13:17

Sharon Shoesmith did not kill and harm Baby P. His mother and boyfriend did. Sharon Shoesmith was actually unfairly dismissed in a political and media storm.

I do not know her so cannot say how likeable or otherwise she is, but it has been judged that she was treated unfairly.

Direct your anger to those who were really responsible for this poor child's death.


Serenitysutton · 27/05/2011 13:17

Being the wrong person for the job does not mean you can be instantly dismissed. I'm, amazed they did it- they surely knew they were not acting lawfully. There are processes to be followed.


Silver1 · 27/05/2011 13:17

But this isn't per se about what the SWs did- it is about how she reacted to her unfair dismissal claim.

OP posts:

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe2726 · 27/05/2011 13:17

Why should she? If you know anything about the workings of a SSD, you'll know that they have incredibly stringent guidelines to work to with essential services being cut and staff difficult to recruit/keep. The BabyP incident isn't the first and won't be the last -not by a long shot.

I think it's high time the government thought long and hard about how the system is supposed to work and then took the it apart, piece by piece, reassembling it with proper instructions and lines of responsibility. The current system does not work and the fact that there aren't more cases is purely down to luck and circumstance.

I also think that once a child has entered the system because of abuse, the parental rights should be severed and they should be made to pay for the upkeep of that child still. That might set an example and reduce the pressure on the 'looked after' system, at least funding extra resources for it.

It's terribly unfair and cowardly, this scape-goating. Hmm


Birdsgottafly · 27/05/2011 13:18

The SW's that took part in the CP conferences were not experienced CP SW's and should not have been given the responsibility. Likewise if the doctor had of been experienced she wouldn't have sent Peter home without an ex-ray. The police would not have left the SW's to get in touch; the list is endlass and makes depressing reading.


Silver1 · 27/05/2011 13:19

minieggfannomore I am well aware she did not kill this boy- but her job was to supervise the protection of children like him to keep them safe when their own parents will not.

OP posts:

HuwEdwards · 27/05/2011 13:20

The problem is, and I know of no-one in real life who disagrees, that she comes across in a very poor light. She looks and sounds smug and self-satisfying and totally without compassion or integrity.

I'm sure this mustn't be the case, but I really feel that's why there's such an overwhelming public dislike for her.


Birdsgottafly · 27/05/2011 13:20

Lying-this didn't happen because of a lack of staff. it was failings across all departments and their inability to work together.

But besides, she should not have been dismissed in the manner that she was.


Birdsgottafly · 27/05/2011 13:22

Lying-how would a family pay for a child when they are on benefits and without it affecting the other children?

The system does work, if used, it wasn't used.

Please create an account

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.

Sign up to continue reading

Mumsnet's better when you're logged in. You can customise your experience and access way more features like messaging, watch and hide threads, voting and much more.

Already signed up?