Thursday, March 12, 2009

Abuse Abuse Abuse: Lord Laming & Tick-box Assessment

I published my book The Cockroach Catcher in January, 2008 and in it I lamented:

………“As we move into the new century child psychiatrists are faced with more and more guidelines and protocols.

Since Maria Colwell Social Services have been working under revised Guidelines and Child Protection Procedures. The sad truth is that more children continue to be abused and killed despite these tighter guidelines and procedures.

My hunch is that despite media coverage many of us still fail to grasp the dark side – the dark side of human nature. Until we do, we shall continue to read about child abuse, abductions and murders of the worst kind.

In our work, it is sometimes necessary not to follow strictly some of these protocols.”……

I have long suspected that guidelines and protocols are there to protect the staff but perhaps not anymore.

In The Times today:
Lord Laming: Social services failings are 'causing child deaths'
March 12, 2009

"A complete overhaul of operations within social services departments is urgently needed after serious flaws were exposed which put the lives of children at risk, the author of a Government-commissioned report said today.

"In a damning verdict in response to the Baby P murder, Lord Laming disclosed that many of the recommmendations he gave in a 2003 report into the death of Victoria Climbie had not been implemented and that society was 'letting children down' as a result.

"Outlining a catalogue of problems with the way social workers operate and are managed, he said breakdowns in information-sharing between agencies, poor training gvien to overstretched frontline staff, red tape preventing social workers from doing their jobs, and an obsession with targets had left the system inadequate.

"Disclosing that 55 children or babies were murdered by someone who knew them last year, the report said that 200,000 still live in homes where there is a high risk of abuse or domestic violence."

55 Children, that is a large number of children.

You can read the full report here. ©Crown Copyright 2009

"I think that maybe I failed in the Victoria Climbie report," he said, at the report's central London launch. 'Maybe I didn’t manage to get across the need to achieve that everywhere as well as I should.'"

"The report said that social workers’ professional practice and judgment were being compromised by an 'over-complicated, lengthy and tick-box assessment and recording system' which failed to therefore respond properly to individual cases."

An over-complicated, lengthy and tick-box assessment and recording system!!!

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