Grandparents Apart Wales Blog Llandudno Town Council

Social workers accused of bias by judge

29-Nov-2014

Dear Friends

Please read this for your information. It is sent to encourage the parents and grandparents who feel aggrieved at the decisions of the Childrenâs Agencies and Family Justice Courts.

There is a welcomed change coming where they will have hope and greater support than what was available previously.

I am available for any comments,

Many thanks

Frank

Social workers accused of bias by judge

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A judge has accused social workers involved in a care application of being biased against members of the child's own family.

In North East Lincolnshire Council -v- G and L, the mother of a three year old boy, referred to as "J, had been unable to care for him due to problems with substance abuse. She died prior to the hearing. Judge Simon Jack also noted allegations of domestic violence involving the late mother and her partner.

The local authority applied for care and placement orders in relation to J, allowing them to place him for adoption with a new family. Both sets of grandparents were willing to take on J's care, but, Judge Jack explained, the social workers had ruled out both sets of grandparents.

One set was thought to have problems with drink and domestic violence, while the second set was deemed to be overly burdened by two older children with unspecified difficulties.

The Judge concluded that the social workers who gave evidence at the hearing had been one-sided in their claims. He declared:

"I had the very strong impression that the local authority witnesses were intent on playing up any factors which were unfavourable to the grandparents and playing down any factors which might be favourable."

The concerns expressed by the social workers about each set of grandparents had been "grossly overstated in order to try and achieve their ends."

He added:

"I have never, in over ten years of hearing care cases taken the view, as I did in this case, that the local authorityâs witnesses were visibly biased in their attempts to support the local authorityâs case."

Turning to the grandparents alleged to have problems with drink and domestic violence, Judge Jack said there was no evidence that children in their care had suffered any adverse effects.

"The reality is that in this country there must be tens of thousands of children who are cared for in homes where there is a degree of domestic violence (now very widely defined) and where parents on occasion drink more than they should, I am not condoning that for a moment, but the Courts are not in the business of social engineering. The courts are not in the business of providing children with perfect homes. If we took into care and placed for adoption every child whose parents had had a domestic spat and every child whose parents on occasion had drunk too much then the care system would be overwhelmed and there would not be enough adoptive parents. So we have to have a degree of realism about prospective carers who come before the Courts."

Nevertheless, he concluded that the youngster should be placed with the second set of grandparents, who, in addition to their older children, were also looking after J's older brother, "R". Judge Jack described R as "clearly a lad who is suffering serious sense of grief and loss" following the death of his mother. But the couple were coping "reasonably well" with the situation, the Judge believed.

Read the judgement here : http://www.bailii.org:80/ew/cases/EWCC/Fam/2014/B77.html

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Deputy Mayor Elect by Llandudno Town Council

04-Feb-2014

I know a lot of you will be aware of my news but I want to state my total commitment to the struggle to have love and tolerance replace hate and revenge in the arena of parents who separate.

My news is on Friday last I was elected to the position of Deputy Mayor Elect by the Town Council of the lovely town of Llandudno.

This is such an honour which I didn't solicit but I will hopefully use the position to enhance the persona of this beautiful town and its residents.

My enthusiasm for the wellbeing of children and families will continue and I hope to engineer a platform from which I can promote the need in our society to really examine what is in the best interests of the children when their parents decide that they no longer love each other.

We need those who work in Family Law and children's agencies to clearly understand the premise that children love each parent equally and to be denied access to one is pure and simple abuse of the child's mind which has its own consequences and anguish to all involved.

I feel the way forward is to continue the close working with FNF-Both Parents Matter Cymru supporting parents and grandparents for the benefit of children who are innocently caught up in family hostilities.

The charity which acknowledges Grandparents Apart Wales has branches across Wales and it is so crucial that these branches which can be found on their web site are attended and supported by people who have experienced alienation from loved ones so that their experiences can strengthen the resolve of those sadly affected by the evil hostility of others who only wish to dominate and control, destroying families in the process.

I am available to help in any way I can.

Best wishes

Frank

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