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The End Of Forced Adoption In The UK? Meet The Social Workers Challenging The System.

Researching Reform

A new piece of research written by social workers predicts that forced adoption will come to an end in the UK. The document also offers new research on the impact of adoptions on birth parents and asks whether it is right for the government to pursue adoption at any cost.

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The report, entitled, “The End of Non-Consensual Adoption? Promoting the Wellbeing of Children in Care,” has been co-written by Joe Smeeton, Director of Social Work Education at the University of Salford and Jo Ward, a Principal Lecturer in the Division of Social Work and Professional Practice at Nottingham Trent University.

It’s a brave piece of research which in part goes against the grain in a country where removing vulnerable children without parental consent is seen as an acceptable practice.

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The paper predicts that non consensual adoption will eventually come to an end in the UK, largely due to fierce…

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The Hidden Agenda Behind Westminster’s Debate On Family Justice Reform

Researching Reform

A debate in Westminster looking at family justice reform is to take place on Wednesday 15th November, but its underlying agenda is likely to disappoint serious reformers and raise eyebrows, too.

Whilst very little information has been offered about this debate – we still don’t know who organised or sponsored it, what the full list of topics will be and who will be attending – there are some clues on the event’s page over at the Parliament website. We have also received information from a Families Needs Fathers Cymru representative which sheds further light on the real agenda behind the debate.

The politician hosting the event is Suella Fernandes MP,  who is the Conservative MP for Fareham. A former member of the Education Committee, she now sits on the Education, Skills and the Economy Sub-Committee, which looks at ways in which education can boost the economy.

Suella was also…

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19 Days – Activate Your Social Media Accounts…

Researching Reform

Together with The Global Partnership To End Violence Against Children, The Women’s World Summit Foundation have launched an excellent campaign to tackle child abuse, which began on 1st November and ends on 19th November, which marks the World Day for the Prevention of Child Abuse. The main theme of this year’s campaign is ‘Ending Harmful Traditional Practices.”

19 Days Sticker_eng

The campaign by WWSF is called 19 Days because of the number of days it spans, and invites everyone to get involved during that time. Play with beautifully designed banners, ribbons, badges and buttons to spruce up your websites and social media accounts whilst helping to raise awareness around the terrible abuses children continue to suffer. You can even organise events and share them with WWSF just by registering on their website.

Everything you need is in WWSF’s Prevention Kit. As you can see, each day is devoted to a different issue within…

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Council Put Children’s Lives At Risk To Cut Costs

Researching Reform

A whistleblower who worked as a social worker for Worcestershire County Council, has called out the local authority for its unethical practices which placed children’s lives in danger. 

The whistleblower, who was part of the council’s failing children’s services team, says the local authority prioritised cuts above everything else, and bullied and intimidated social workers who refused to put quantity before quality when it came to preparing child protection assessments.

Further claims made by the former social worker include:

• That “stressed and tired” social workers were exploited – with some working 25 hours without pay, on top of their contracted hours.

• Several social workers were going on sick leave due to stress.

• One social worker went to work with a broken hand, afraid of the consequences of not meeting a deadline.

• A social worker dealing with 40 cases – more than the maximum which is meant to…

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BBC’s Today Programme And Researching Reform On Children’s Right To Speak To Judges

Researching Reform

BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme this morning focuses on children’s right to speak with family law judges. Researching Reform had the privilege of talking with Sanchia Berg about the policy, what happened to it and why it was needed.

The piece includes thoughts from a boy called Oscar, who says he feels children should have the right to speak to judges and that it would make the process more friendly.

An extract from our conversation can be heard at around 0:52:00 over on BBC Radio 4’s live player, and the accompanying article on the topic can be read here.

For a summary of this policy, and its development over the last ten years, our Lexis Nexis article offers a complete history.

Many thanks to Sanchia for inviting us to share our thoughts.

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