Thursday, 30 January 2014

MP explains his controversial comments on family courts

John Hemming MP responded to the criticisms expressed in Community Care regarding his advice to certain parents that they should emigrate if they wish to have a family life. He believes the child protection system is concentrating too much on very young children but this comes from managerial pressures and Government policy to have more children adopted rather than from front line staff. The checks and balances in the system do not work either, with the consequence that young children are removed from their families unnecessarily while older children in need are not being protected as the increase in child deaths reveal.
There are quite a few social workers who have raised concerns with me about how the system is working. However, they know that they would be subject to disciplinary action were they to make the same points publicly...
I welcome the proposal to have greater scrutiny of care proceedings. It remains that unless the family courts operate as an effective quality control mechanism, management priorities will predominate. That is not good for children, parents or social workers.

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