Child Welfare Debates In Parliament This Week

Researching Reform

The 18th January was a busy day for child welfare matters in the House of Commons.

As Britain moves forward with plans to leave the EU, questions are now being asked about cross border agency information sharing, especially in relation to child protection.

Yesterday, ministers discussed how leaving the EU might affect Britain’s security, law enforcement and its criminal justice system.  Home Affairs Committee Chair, Yvette Cooper, asked whether the government planned to try to keep its Europol membership. Europol has worked closely with the Met in order to protect children from child abuse and exploitation.

The child abuse inquiry also continues to dominate Commons’ discussions.

In another debate, Ann Clwyd MP asked if the Home Department would take steps to encourage survivors of non recent child abuse to share their experience with the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse. (And Ann, it is non recent rather than historic abuse, a term survivors and victims…

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Report Finds Children Are Unnecessarily Removed From Parents

Researching Reform

Whilst this is something we write about often on the blog and campaign passionately on, it is wonderful to see other organisations working to highlight poor policy especially in relation to children being removed from parents when better alternatives exist.

A new report by Legal Action For Women says that children are increasingly being removed from single parent families due to poverty and that mothers who actively come forward for help to improve their situations are finding their children are being taken from them instead. It also raises concerns over the ‘secrecy’ of family courts which prevent mothers from openly talking about their cases.

Dr Andy Bilson, who is emeritus professor of social work at the University of Lancashire, has been looking carefully at adoption data and concludes that the steep rise in care applications has less to do with an awareness of, or rise in incidents of neglect and more…

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The Buzz

Researching Reform

The news that should be right on your radar:

Buzz

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Suffer the Little Children at Christmas: How Seriously does the Government take Child Sexual Abuse? #CSA @UKHomeOffice @MetPoliceUK

National Inquiry into Organised, Orchestrated & Historic Child Sexual Abuse

16-11-25-hansard-csaThis 11-minute debate is the debate of Diane Abbott MP’s urgent question as Shadow Home Secretary – on Friday 25 November 2016 11:00. The Hansard report is here.

Following the publication of the report by HM Inspectorate of Constabularies about National Child Protection Inspections, she asked for a statement.

Responses are provided by the Minister for Policing, Brendan Lewis MP commenting on the findings:

  • the Met has been failing in its duty to protect children from harm;
  • nearly 75% of all cases either needed improvement or were inadequate;
  • it is the most damning of all reports HMIC have ever written.

Diane Abbott MP (Hackney North and Stoke Newington) Lab:

The Home Office said in its “Annual Report and Accounts 2015-16”: “We have already recognised CSA as a national threat in the Strategic Policing Requirement, obliging forces to maximise specialist skills and expertise to prevent offending and resolve cases.”

Other…

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Researching reform: 2016 – what we’ve seen and where we’re going #CSA @MoJGovUK @UKHomeOffice

16-12-19-natashaGoogle alerted me to this exceptional overview that Natasha Phillips wrote for Family Law on top of publishing her excellent Researching Reform blog:

A month by month reminder of 2016 with fairly dim predictions for 2017. More of the same!???… What a pity!

What more do we need to do as victims, supporters, McKenzie Friends and online activists to STOP the systematic destruction of families? More than 1,000 children have been removed every month for over a year! The trends have been rising since 1997!!!

The article mentions clearly who is AGAINST compulsory reporting of child sexual abuse and one HAS to question WHY, given our bad experiences:

I suppose it would also be those 150 Local Authorities who have ensured the consistent rise of the number of children removed from their biological parents!?… The remaining 204 of the 354 apparently don’t provide this ‘service’. I have established these facts and figures about Children in Care from analysing public statistics. But who is going to do what about that???

Do we need yet more evidence as the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse is trying to establish?

Can we not begin to LISTEN to CHILDREN and ADULT SURVIVORS and HEAR and BELIEVE THEM???

What’s wrong with us adults???

But maybe we can trust that, behind the scenes, the bad guys ‘die’ or retire while ‘exercises of appeasement’ are being carried out… That ought to include the abandonment of ‘austerity’ as the main cause for ruining families, when fathers can’t find meaningful work and women have to help paying bills…

In any case: never, never, never give in or up!!! Keep learning to stand your ground, no matter how slippery it may feel!!!…

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Portuguese Government to analyse cases involving Portuguese children taken by British social services @CEOofHMCTS @MoJGovUK @UKHomeOffice

The Pedro Family: five children snatched by Lincoln County Council - without paper work

16-11-24-algarve-residentFollowing a relentless media campaign to highlight Portuguese ‘victims’ of Britain’s alleged “stolen children scandal”, the government has at last agreed to step in.

Pedro Proença – one of the Portuguese lawyers who travelled to England in a bid to help an ever increasing number of Portuguese families recover children from the enforced care of British social service – has told TVI24 that pro-bono efforts have at last borne fruit.

“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has guaranteed that it will be giving special attention to these cases, evaluating them one by one”, he said.

“If cases of real abuse by the British authorities are detected – processual failings or illegalities by the courts and social services – the Portuguese government will step into alert the British government”.

The news is a red-letter day for so many Portuguese emigrés struggling to recover children removed and even placed for adoption on what…

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England’s Stolen Children – Controversial New Documentary On Forced Adoption

Researching Reform

The French media have been fascinated for some time by England’s use of Forced Adoption, as a country very much in the minority in how they apply this controversial approach to vulnerable families. The latest documentary from France on this topic has been produced by France 5 and is called “England’s Stolen Children”. It airs tomorrow evening, 7.40pm UK time. 

The documentary makes several claims which portray Britain’s child protection sector as unethical, lawless and profiteering. Information about the documentary includes contentious language, which we’ve translated below:

“This documentary tells the story of the thousands of children unjustly removed from their families. It chronicles families’ terrifying experiences of children taken at birth, the promise of future removal whilst mothers are pregnant and the threat of removal directed at women who have not yet had children, solely on a suspicion of future harm to the child.

The setting for this documentary…

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