Mental health tests for children entering care delayed

April 25, 2017 1 comment

social work

Plans to routinely assess the mental health of children entering the care system have been delayed. Pilot schemes were due to start next month in ten areas but the plans are now on hold, the Department for Education has announced, pending the results of the snap general election. The scheme would have seen mental health…

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Social worker ‘exaggerated’ threats from father

April 20, 2017 5 comments

children in care

A “complacent” county council’s failure to support a newly qualified social worker contributed to his invention of threats by a parent, a family court judge has concluded. The inexperienced social worker, ‘LM’, had been involved in the preparation of paperwork relating to the children of a man called ‘CW’, who have since been taken into…

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Children’s Commissioner worries about ‘pinball’ kids

April 20, 2017 2 comments

family law

Some children in the care system experience repeated upheavals, a new report claims. The latest Stability Index from the Office of the Children’s Commissioner analysed care system data for the 12 months to March last year. More than 7,000 ‘looked after’ children, or one in ten, were moved to new placements with foster families or…

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Care applications reach record level

April 18, 2017 5 comments

children in care

A record-breaking 14,544 children were taken into care in the 12 months to March Cafcass has reported. March alone saw 1,288 care applications: itself the second highest monthly figure on record. The annual total comfortably exceeded previous year’s tally, when just 12,792 youngsters entered the care system: nearly 14 per cent fewer. It also confirms…

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Tower Hamlets children’s services ‘inadequate’

April 11, 2017 1 comment

family law

Child protection services in the London Borough of Tower Hamlets are “inadequte”, Osted has declared. Vulnerable chldren are often left in families prone to abusive behaviour for unacceptable lengths of time instead of being taken straight into care, inspectors concluded, and management hasfailed to properly oversee the efforts of social workers. Osted said the council…

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New Zealand overhauls child protection

April 3, 2017 0 comments

family law

The New Zealand government is set to overhaul the way it approaches child protection. The government department which deals with this issue, the Ministry of Child Youth and Family (CYF), will be replaced by the Ministry for Vulnerable Children. Lawmakers insist that this represents more than just a name change and hope a shift in…

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Councils ‘neglecting families in need’

March 22, 2017 0 comments

children in care

The child protection departments of councils around the country are increasingly neglecting families in need, MPs have claimed. Instead of intervening in the lives of problem familes at an early stage, reports the All Party Parliamentary Group for Children, cash-strapped local authorities are increasingly focusing solely on the most serious cases of neglect and abuse….

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Care hearing abandoned following “inadequate” reports

March 14, 2017 1 comment

child protection

A Family Court Judge has abandoned a care hearing, denouncing “wholly inadequate” assessments by social workers. Sitting at the Liverpool Family Court, Mr Justice MacDonald demanded that new assessments be conducted of potential carers for a baby girl. The council would have to explain its earlier failures in the case, the Judge insisted. The case…

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‘Absent’ vs ‘missing’ for children in care

March 13, 2017 0 comments

children in care

The Police regularly mishandle reports of children going missing from care, an international charity has claimed. Too many forces class children in such circumstances as ‘absent’ and therefore not at risk it believes. According to a recent National Crime Agency report, only a little number of regional forces routinely give children who run away from…

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